2021 FIM MotoGP World Championship
Round 12 – Silverstone
Fabio Quartararo – P1
“This win felt great! In Austria I was thinking of the championship when we were switching bikes, but here I thought of nothing. I was feeling great on the bike, and I enjoyed fighting for the victory. It was perfect. I enjoy racing like that, living in the moment. I felt great at the start and stayed calm. I only made a few mistakes, and I felt like I was really good on braking. It was better than expected, and because of that I had kind of a change in strategy during the race. When I had a 3s lead I said, ’Okay, now it‘s time to go slowly and not make any mistakes‘, and then on the last lap I was just enjoying the track, still riding slowly. I‘m so happy about this result. It‘s a really special win. When I won in Assen, I already had some fans there. I don‘t know how many fans there were here today, but it was massive, and it was great to share this moment with them. I want to thank them. For a Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP rider, it‘s always nice to win a Monster Energy Grand Prix, so I basically got it all, it‘s amazing! It‘s a great win for them, and also for my family and the team. I have a mechanic who couldn‘t come here, Daniele Grelli, so this one is for him. I can‘t wait to be with the crew to celebrate.”
Alex Rins – P2
“I’m super, super, super happy because we’ve put in a lot of effort and work to get back on the podium. It hasn’t been easy, because even when I’ve had the pace, I’ve had crashes and problems. I was aiming for a Top 5 finish today, but in the end I felt really good and comfortable with the bike so I was able to push. I was fast but without taking risks or having to make aggressive moves. It’s a great feeling to be back on the podium and celebrate with all my team.”
Aleix Espargaro – P3
“We’ve come so close. We have almost had it several times and finally we did it! A deserved podium that we’ve worked hard for and I dedicate, first and foremost, to Aprilia. The team has always worked to the utmost during these years. We have overcome difficult times together and now we are reaping the fruits of our labour. On the podium, I thought about Fausto, my family, and all the people who have been close to me. Our growth over the last two years has been extraordinary. We have improved in every aspect, but we needed a podium to lend credence to what we’ve done. I knew we had a chance today. We built our performance throughout all the sessions and I felt good in warm up this morning too. I had a few doubts at the start on tyre choice but in the end, we got it right. I lost a few positions at a certain point but I was able to recover, except on Fabio, who pulled away and created a gap. In the finale, I was struggling a bit with the front, but to compensate, I had good traction and that’s why I didn’t fight Jack in the braking sections, relying instead on crossing the trajectory and exploiting my acceleration. Now we need to celebrate and then get refocused straight away. There are more races coming up where we can be competitive. One podium can’t be enough to make us happy. We want more.”
Jack Miller – P4
“It’d be hard to get much closer to a podium than that – a bit over a tenth of a second after racing for 40-odd minutes – so it’s hard to know how to feel about Silverstone on Sunday. On one hand it was a good bounce-back for me because six laps in, it wasn’t looking too good, but I was biding my time. And I nearly timed it right.
“I was seventh with half the race to go but a load of guys in front of me were running the soft front tyre, and I was on the mediums so the race was always going to come to me. And it did – I passed my teammate Pecco (Bagnaia), (Joan) Mir and then Pol (Espargaro), and all of a sudden Aleix (Espargaro) was in front of me and a podium was there if I could get by him. I had five laps to do it – well, technically I did do it because I was past him for a second there on the last lap – but he got on the box and I didn’t. But, fair play to him, and it was big for Aprilia to get their first podium. It’s good to have so many manufacturers who can fight for podiums and victories these days, it’s awesome for the sport to have six different bikes in the top six like we did today.
“It was always going to come down to the final lap with Aleix, and I could see the right-hand side of his tyre was struggling where mine was good, but the opposite was true too. He had more life on the left side than I did, and the corner at the end of the last straight is a left, so he was always going to have it over me on the last lap. I tried, but didn’t quite make it.
“Where this race did feel good was that I was able to control it a lot more, and I had as good of a pace as anyone in the second half of the race and didn’t fade with tyre wear or something physical, or anything else. I was trying to work my way into the race on that medium tyre, so I executed the race I wanted to, let’s say. The first lap was hectic but I got out of that OK, and then I could see the group at the front and could set my sights on them – well, everyone besides Fabio (Quartararo) anyway because he just cleared off and that was all we saw of him after about seven laps. We were all pretty much racing for second after he pulled the pin.
“Fabio was the man with his race pace here, so we knew all weekend that it would come down to needing to keep tabs on him early and not let him escape, but I made life hard for myself by only qualifying seventh. I won’t lie, I was pretty pissed off after qualifying because I got through practice as the fastest rider and went straight to Q2, so seventh on the grid wasn’t what I had in mind. I had two runs on new tyres in Q2 and just couldn’t find the pace. It was a shame because I’d felt mega all weekend before Q2 but just didn’t feel comfortable in qualifying. It was a strange one – I wasn’t able to go as fast on a new tyre in Q2 as I was on a used tyre in FP3 when I was fastest of everyone – so yeah, she was a bit of a head-scratcher.
“I wondered what sort of condition Silverstone would be in because it had been a while since we were here – it was back in 2019 and they’ve had Formula One race here three times since then, so we all wondered if it would be pretty bumpy. But the track was in pretty good condition which makes this place so much more enjoyable, because it’s a proper old-school Grand Prix track with a lot of different styles of corners, they don’t build places like Silverstone these days. Sure, there were a few bumps but it was better than we thought, which was a good surprise to get. Right from the first lap of Friday I had a smile on my face, it was good to be back.
“The British Grand Prix is one of the ones I look forward to every year. My results here haven’t been that good normally, but it’s definitely one of those historic races that’s extra special to ride in. Right from Friday morning the British fans came out, there were plenty of them all weekend so I was super stoked to see that. Definitely makes it more enjoyable when there’s a lot of fans around.Aragon’s next in a couple of weeks, so I’ll catch you from there.”
Pol Espargaro – P5
“I enjoyed the race a lot, this was the feeling I was looking for after struggling. To be leading the race was something really special. We went with the soft rear because it gave us the best feeling, but it wasn’t enough to fight for the podium and there’s still some more work to do. Anyway, until the middle of the race I was there, fighting and enjoying it so much – even closing the gap to Rins and Aleix when my tyre was still performing well. As the grip dropped, I controlled the gap and finished the weekend well. It has been a great weekend overall, we’ve been able to show what we can do and now we head to Aragon where Honda has been very strong in the past.”
Brad Binder – P6
“Today was a solid day, all things considered. I had a tough start to the race and struggled a lot in the first few laps but as the race went on I got stronger and stronger. I’m really happy with the rhythm I managed to keep until the end. I want to say a huge thanks to the team; this weekend has not been easy for us and the guys have worked non-stop. We tried everything and the best bike we had all weekend is the bike we had for the race.”
Iker Lecuona – P7
“I’m really, really happy! Qualifying yesterday was difficult for me. I made some mistakes but I knew the pace was there. In Warm Up this morning, I felt really strong, finishing in P5 and I knew if I can recover some places, I can fight in the front group. The start of the race was ok, although I tried to save the tyre a bit because the conditions were cold. Lap by lap I managed to improve my lap time. On the last lap, I overtook the last rider to finish in P7, which is my second best result in MotoGP and it happened in the dry. I want to say thanks to my team because this weekend was very good and very strong.”
Álex Márquez – P8
“Sunday at Silverstone and we can be happy and proud at the race we did, especially starting from 17th. It’s pretty difficult but today I did it. Our choice of the soft rear for the race was right for us. It performed as expected and helped with the rear grip which we’re missing, but we did good and the race went well. Now, I’m looking forward to Aragon and to take learnings from this weekend. We’re happy and I’m proud of the team, I’d like to thank them for their hard work during the weekend.”
Joan Mir – P9
“Well, honestly, the feeling today was really good and I was able to ride in a nice way and be in the positions that I wanted. I felt confident with my bike and I knew that I could have good race pace. Even if my results this weekend haven’t been really strong, I was feeling very strong in the race. But then I started struggling with the front end, which was completely unexpected, and I lost a lot of time in the last laps. This problem started from the 10th lap, and from then it was a bit of a struggle and I’m disappointed because I was hoping for a better result, even for my first time here.”
Danilo Petrucci – P10
“It was a good top 10 result. We managed to hit the target we set yesterday. Unfortunately, I lost a lot of time in overtaking, mainly on the straights, so it was difficult for me to pass other riders. In the end, it was pretty decent. I think we could have been a little bit better. Anyway, it’s a good result. Now I really have a very good feeling on the bike, maybe Aragon will be even better with the KTM for us. We will fight for a good result there as well.”
Johann Zarco – P11
“It has been a difficult weekend; I struggled a lot. We worked a lot but I was not able to achieve what I had hoped. Now this chapter ends and we are concentrating on doing well at Aragon.”
Enea Bastianini – P12
“I’m happy because I knew it wouldn’t be an easy race for me after the two heavy crashes we had, as I wasn’t 100%. I had a bad start, so I tried to be conservative at the beginning. In the middle of the race, I started to have a good pace, which allowed me to recover some positions. Overall I’m happy and we’ll go for more in Aragón.”
Takaaki Nakagami – P13
“So from P15 on the grid, I had a good start and was able to get up to P10 by the first or second lap. From the beginning I felt quite comfortable and had good pace on the bike and I thought I had an opportunity to have a good race today. But in the second half of the race I had a big drop in the rear tyre and it was really, really difficult to stay on the bike. Towards the end of the race, I dropped positions and lap time and ended up in P13 which is not the best, but I gave my all and I’m looking forward to the next one in Aragon.”
Francesco Bagnaia – P14
“Unfortunately, after a perfect weekend where I felt really strong, today in the race, something didn’t work. Now we’re going to analyse all the data and understand why I didn’t have any rear grip from the first few laps. I am very disappointed because I was sure I could have a really good race after being fast all weekend. Now let’s move on and try to come back stronger at Aragón”.
Luca Marini – P15
“Obviously I can’t be happy with today’s position, I had a great pace and could have challenged for the top-10. I managed the rear well and I was hoping to have a bit more in the last few laps. I struggle to overtake on the straight, I can’t get close enough to the guys in front to overtake under braking and I often have to go long. This is an area we need to work on at Aragón and Misano to be strong under braking, because when you start from the middle of the grid it is difficult to defend yourself in the first few laps. In the end I fought with Bagnaia and I preferred not to attack because it’s important to help with the other Ducati riders for the championship and at this moment a point for him can make the difference.”
Miguel Oliveira – P16
“It was not the race we were looking for, at least the result. It felt like I didn’t have a lot of grip from the beginning. Nothing really clicked for me this weekend. Hopefully we can keep working with a positive attitude and get things going in our way again in Aragon.”
Cal Crutchlow – P17
“I did enjoy the race. Obviously, I’m disappointed about where I finished, but overall I was pleased with my performance and pleased with the lap times I was doing. We came here to do a good job, and I feel we did that. During this weekend we worked in a great way with the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team, but I just started too far back. It was as simple as that, because I felt that I had a bit of a better pace to run with the guys nearer the front. In the mid-race I was quite pleased with my pace. It was probably a little bit faster than the pace I was doing over the weekend, so I stayed consistent. We saw a lot of guys dropping with the tyres, which we knew would happen. I was in the exact same boat with the rear tyre, but I was able to manage it well, which was quite pleasing. Overall, to be racing here in Silverstone in front of the home fans, I got great support. I’m glad they got to see three great races today. We can go away from here proud about our weekend.”
Valentino Rossi – P18
“It’s a great shame because I felt good with the bike all weekend and I was quite fast. I had a good start and good first laps; I was in a place where I could fight. However, after six laps I had problems with the rear grip, which made me slow. This sometimes happens to us and we tried a lot of things, but in the end we couldn’t fix it. I think if the temperature was a little higher than I could have used the hard tyre and we are normally better on that, but I was cold so we had to use the medium. It’s sad because I wanted to have a decent race here at Silverstone, as there is a big crowd. I want to thank them all for their support. It has been a great pleasure to ride here with so many people here all weekend and thank you everyone for your love over the years.”
Jake Dixon – P19
“I felt good all weekend and felt really strong today, especially in morning Warm Up. The pace I had, I felt like I could stay with the guys in the back group. In the race I didn’t have the same feeling and the grip was different. It’s a bit frustrating. It was a great experience, although I wanted more from the race. The team did a great job and we made improvements during the weekend, but the race was out of our hands. I feel like I’ve done a good job; I was two seconds off the top guys in Qualifying after only a small number of laps. I can’t thank the British crowd enough, the cheers were fantastic every lap and it was such a nice feeling. It was so nice to see a packed out crowd at Silverstone and the atmosphere was sensational. It was an incredible feeling.”
Marc Marquez – DNF
“First of all I want to say sorry to Jorge Martin, already I went to him and his team to say sorry after the race. It was my mistake; I was too optimistic with that overtake. Races are sometimes like this and today it was me who made the mistake. Overall the weekend has been quite good as we have been fast in a lot of sessions, even after a big crash on Friday. It’s a shame to make this mistake in the race because we had the pace to do something interesting here today.”
Jorge Martín – DNF
“These unfortunate moments are also a part of racing. It’s a shame because I felt like I could have had a great race. Marc has come to apologize, now the only thing to do is to completely reset everything and focus on the next race.”
Massimo Meregalli – Monster Yamaha Team Director
“What a great win by Fabio! He looked in control throughout the entire race. We prepared for today’s race in a perfect way. All sessions, including Warm Up, were crucial, and we’re delighted that it led to Fabio winning the Monster Energy British Grand Prix. Still, we didn‘t expect him to pull away that easily. His 2’00.098s lap was the fastest of the race. He set it at the perfect time, and it was the nail in the coffin for the other riders. After that they didn’t stand a chance. Fabio really was on another level and managed the gap perfectly even without pushing 100%. We couldn‘t be more elated for him, our title sponsor Monster Energy, and for all the team and Yamaha staff to be able to celebrate such a dominating win. Cal had a more difficult race. He wanted to get into the points, but in the end he didn‘t quite manage that. He lost a bit of time at the start of the race battling with other riders, and towards the end he was one of the many who noticed a drop in the rear tyre, which we know happens here quite easily. Still, he managed it well and rode a quite steady race, so overall he ended the weekend with a positive feeling.”
Shinichi Sahara – Suzuki Project Leader and Team Director
“Today was a mixed day for us. We’re very happy for Alex, finally he got a podium and he did a good job. This is his first podium of the year, so it’s very nice for all of us. It was a pity for Joan because he was in really good shape and he learned the track well, but then he had some issues with the feeling on the front end. We need to investigate what happened because it cost him quite a few positions. But he is still second in the championship, which is a great thing. We know that qualifying is our biggest issue at the moment, so we’ll continue to work and fight.”
Ken Kawauchi – Suzuki Technical Manager
“First I want to say congratulations to Alex, we’ve all waited a long time to see him on the podium again and it’s been a strong comeback. I hope he can continue in this way. Joan’s performance wasn’t bad, but he struggled with the feeling and in the end we couldn’t get the result we’d hoped for. But the season isn’t finished yet, we will continue to fight and let’s see what happens.”
Mike Leitner – Red Bull KTM Race Manager
“In general we’re quite pleased with the result. It was tricky for us to find the right set-up for this circuit from Friday. Silverstone is one of the tracks where we haven’t done quite so many laps with our race package. In five years MotoGP missed two races here but Brad and Iker did a great job today and overtook a lot of riders. Danilo also made a lot of forward progress. We tried to help Miguel for set-up but he was struggling with rear grip. We’ll go to Aragon hoping to start in a better way.”
Hervé Poncharal – Tech3 KTM Team Manager
“What a race! Finally, we could see our two riders, Iker and Danilo in the fight for top positions. By far, this is the best race of the season. We knew there was something to do, but honestly, this race overcame our expectations. I am speechless, as this year hasn’t been easy, it was always difficult to receive Iker and Danilo back in the garage when the race hasn’t been going the way they wanted and we wanted. But today we had a great fight!”
“We could see both, Iker and Danilo showing an incredible fighting spirit. They did some great passes, aggressive, but clean as you expect from a rider. I am very proud of Iker and Danilo. To have both of them in the top 10 with nearly no crash in front means it was a real top 10 result. Even though KTM didn’t get too much data on that circuit, I think we turned the situation around in a positive way with the three KTM’s in the top 10.”
“Clearly, I’m very happy for Danilo to have shown he still is a fast MotoGP rider and he had some fun today riding and passing guys. I’m really proud of Iker, who at 21 years old is showing that he is growing and becoming a better MotoGP rider every day. I hope this performance will help him to find a MotoGP ride next year. All in all, we are happy. It was a great weekend, we worked really hard. We didn’t have any rain and this is a tough track to understand, but together with the team and the KTM engineers we learned a lot. That has been a very important and crucial GP. So, congrats Iker, congrats Danilo, congrats to the whole crew! As I usually say, it’s just a few days off before we hit the track again.”
Razlan Razali – Petronas SRT Team Principal
“It has been a very mixed weekend for us. It was a very difficult MotoGP race with rear grip issues for Valentino, which saw him drop from sixth to outside of the points. It was a baptism of fire for Jake, but I’m sure it was a nice experience to be riding in the MotoGP class for the first time at his home Grand Prix.”
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