The curtain opens and a motorcycle is seen passing at 362.4 kilometers per hour . Never seen. The curtain rises and you can see a pilot in red, of course, Francesco ‘Pecco’ Bagnaia , riding an impressive Ducati getting the first pole position of the season, of the 2021 World Championship, and everyone applauding because someone , a pilot, and above all Italian, and above all a disciple of Valentino Rossi’s academy , lead tomorrow (7:00 pm, DAZN and Movistar) the grid of the Qatar Grand Prix , which opens the big season.
“I can swear that I did the lap knowing that I could get down, for the first time, on this circuit, from 1.53 minutes (1.52.772), but I can also swear that the last third of the track, the last three corners, I have done with my eyes closed, at 12 I didn’t know what I was doing, at 13 I almost fell … and so on until the end, but I knew I was going to achieve pole, I had a feeling it since Friday, when I saw that I had three or four corners where, if I played it, my already good time would improve a lot ”. As you can see, ‘Pecco’ knew what he was doing.
A bunch of favorites
He, 24-year-old Moto2 champion (2018), 134 grands prix, 10 victories and one of the brilliant signings of Ducati to shake up his boxing, once the veteran Andrea Dovizioso has not been renewed , represents the generation that has been pushing, that in which they are, yes, Joan Mir (10th on the grid), Fabio Quartararo, Álex Rins, Jack Miller , who yesterday failed in his attempt to achieve pole, Franco Morbidelli, Álex Márquez, Pol Espargaró and Maverick Viñales , To cite the most brilliant, called to rub shoulders with the reborn Marc Márquez , for the dominance of the next decade.
Tomorrow’s race in Losail starts with three Yamaha (Bagnaia, the ‘Diablo’ and the ‘Doctor’, fourth today stuck, in slipstream, sucking colin of his student Bagnaia in his fast lap) and three Ducati (Bagnaia, Miller and Johann Zarco) in the first two rows.
That is to say, yes or yes, a Ducati wins (as almost always: in 2018 and 2019, the last two times it has been raced in Qatar, ‘Dovi’ has won in the final sprint with MM93) and / or a Yamaha. “I think that both Fabio and I are ready to fight, I feel very good on the bike although, yes, the top speed of the Ducati is scary,” says ‘MVK’.
The Ducati flies, yeah
And he’s right, folks. Zarco broke the top speed record for a MotoGP motorcycle again today in practice this afternoon, by crowning the straight, over a kilometer from Losail, at 362.4 km / h. A real madness.
Borgo Panigale’s ‘Desmosedici’, due to its engine and aerodynamics (they invented the ailerons), exceeds 15 km / h. to the Suzuki (Mir and Rins have it horrible), at 10 km / h. to the Yamaha (terrible they have it Quartararo and Viñales) and in 8 kms / h. to the Honda (‘Polyccio’ has it badly) and it is evident that, starting as they do from the first two rows, they are going to try to escape. They may, of course, be afraid of running out of gas and, then, take away some of the power from their engine. If they do, the rest will have a choice.