Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Pol Espargaro delivered a relentless performance in front of nearly 70,000 fans today at the Aragon Grand Prix which he completed in 8th. The young Spaniard impressively concluded the morning warm up in 3rdplace, which left him highly motivated for the afternoon. Here, he kicked off his fight from the fourth row of the grid and bolted forwards when the lights went out. Espargaro was shuffled back to 12th place by the close of the first lap, yet he remained focused and set into a consistent rhythm as he targeted climbing back up through the field. The home hero progressed forward and by the 4th lap, he was running in 9th. Following this, he continued to inch closer to the rider ahead and on lap 16 he seized 8th after moving past Andrea Dovizioso. He then set his sights on closing down the San Marino race winner, Dani Pedrosa and gave his all before eventually crossing the finish line in this position. The 2013 Moto2 World Champion now confidently looks ahead to the Japanese GP where he will aim to clinch the leading satellite honours at Yamaha’s home Grand Prix alongside returning teammate, Bradley Smith.
Espargaro was the sole rider for the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team today after Alex Lowes, who was standing in for the injured Bradley Smith, was deemed unfit after being medically reviewed this morning following his crash in FP3 yesterday. In the accident, the young Briton injured his left foot and suffered swelling and contusion, which did not improve overnight and subsequently he was ruled out of the race.
Position: 8th - Championship: 9th - Points: 96
"First of all, I have to thank the Tech3 team who did an amazing job this weekend with all the crashes that we had. The guys were always quick at repairing the bikes and today the motorcycle that I ran with felt very strong. However, I must say that I am a little bit disappointed with myself and the end result. I think we had some more bad luck yesterday and it penalised us to start from 11th on the grid. I was truly comfortable on the Yamaha today and I was confident about my chances, but unfortunately, I made a mistake at the beginning of the race and went wide at the end of the back straight and this is where I lost contact to the group in front of me. Without this slip-up, I would have probably been able to finish in front of Dani and my brother. Nevertheless, a top eight is still positive and the points that I collected are vital for my championship aspirations. Next up is the Japanese GP which is a very special race for me after my second consecutive Suzuka 8 Hours victory so I’m looking forward to seeing the Japanese fans again.
Position: DNS - Championship: 23th - Points: 3
"It’s a real shame that I didn’t end my time in MotoGP in a positive way, but I’ve really enjoyed the experience and the whole Monster Yamaha Tech3 team were very welcoming to me. I have learnt a lot and even though it’s a pity that this race didn’t end in a positive way, Silverstone and Misano were fantastic. With regards to my injury, the top of my foot is still swollen and I’ve lost a lot of movement so I’m going to get everything checked as there are a couple of areas that are still sore and I have the Superbike race in France next week. The crash yesterday was big and I feel quite lucky to get away with just this injury and nothing worse. I must thank the whole team again and also wish them all the best for the rest of the season. It was definitely special to complete my first ever MotoGP race in Silverstone as it was my home GP, and I can happily look back on the past month which certainly improved my ability as a motorcycle rider and I hope I can come back to the championship in the future."
Hervé Poncharal - Team manager:
“Pol’s result was a sweet end to what was a tricky Grand Prix. The whole team worked really hard after all the crashes that happened so to finish 8th was much more satisfying than it usually would be. For sure, Pol didn’t feel 100% physically or in terms of confidence, but he gave everything that he had. He lost a bit of time on the first lap, but was strong and consistent from there onwards and eventually finished less than 20 seconds to the winner, which is definitely a good performance. With a better grid position, I believe that we could have been in the Pedrosa, Crutchlow, Aleix group, but in the end I am very happy with Pol as he did his best and we got some strong points. Our Spanish rider is in a good shape, plus his confidence is returning and next up we are heading to the three flyaway races, that are going to be crucial. We are still on course for the top satellite rider position in the standings, which I know, is important for Pol and everyone at Tech3 will push until the end to try to get that title with him. On the other side of the garage, it is a big shame to end the three GP’s with Alex Lowes in the way it did and he was just really unlucky with the crash in FP3. I would like to thank him once again, he is a great guy who showed his potential and that he is more than capable of riding successfully in MotoGP. We all hope Alex recovers well and I want to wish him luck for Superbike race in France as well as for the remainder of the season. Also, I hope to have him again in the box with us soon. Thanks to the whole team who worked tirelessly, but next up is Japan and I hope everybody gets a good rest before we head east.”