Dutch Grand Prix / “We have to stop Fabio”: Quartararo (Yamaha) knows what awaits him in Assen

Leaving second on the grid and beating Assen is a scenario that Fabio Quartararo knows. He had written it last year to sign a victory that had allowed him to take the lead in the world championship. So when the Frenchman finished second in the qualifying session on Saturday with his Yamaha, he didn’t seem really affected to finish behind Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Team). “Second place is a place I likehe released “El Diablo” with a smile. Last year I also started from this position and it went really well. We hope it will be the same. “

The story would be beautiful. And the gain of victory especially profitable. Currently at the top of the standings with a 34-point lead over Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia), Quartararo would fly to the top of the World Cup successfully in Assen. Then you would be in an ideal situation to spend your summer vacation in complete serenity. He would not be on a boulevard to win a second consecutive world title. But it would still give him a good margin to handle the second half of the season.

Dutch Grand Prix

The incredible Bagnaia covers Quartararo for the pole


This is precisely a scenario that his rivals do not want to see. Starting with Espargaro, who will start from the second row after reaching fifth place in the standings. “I want to win, but at this point in the championship it is very important to finish ahead of Fabio and reduce the difference.the Spaniard insisted. I would love to go on vacation to less than one race behind him (…). We have to stop Fabio, we can’t let him escape at the start of the race, but he loses. It is our job in Pecco (Bagnaia, ed.) And me to stop it sooner, because if it leaves we will not be able to return it.

“I used to fight Italian motorcycles”

Bagnaia is at the same wavelength. With a little extra motivation after his early retirement in Germany last week. The Italian has done the first part of the job taking the pole ahead of the Frenchman, but the hardest part remains to be done. “Surely Fabio is always very efficient on this circuitstressed the Ducati rider. I’d love to fight, but by the end of the race, not just the first two laps! I think on this track it’s harder to make a gap at the start of the race but we showed that we were fast in the first laps and so was Fabio. Maybe we can widen the gap.

In the “Temple of Speed,” however, victory could be played as a long-distance race. In uncertain weather conditions and with low temperatures, Quartararo is considering this hypothesis. “Here it is not so important to try to escape because at the end of the race you can also attack and set good times.advanced the French. Last year I rolled a tenth slower on lap 20 compared to my best lap, so I’m not too worried. Currently my goal is not to try to escape but of course, if I get the chance, I will.

The package does not leave it. But Quartararo knows what awaits Assen. “I’m a little used to fighting Italian bikes“, he acknowledged with a smile.”Later I will think about the championship, but my goal is to do a great race and come home eager. We will attack 100% from the first to the last round. Maybe it will take me five weeks to recover!“But if the victory is at the end of the effort, Quartararo will have five weeks to savor it.

Dutch Grand Prix

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Dutch Grand Prix

Bagnaia dominates the first day of testing, Quartararo and Zarco in the match

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