Zarco: "A pity" our target now is just finishing races

KTM MotoGP rider Johann Zarco says it was a “pity” to be focused on just finishing the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez because he was “fighting more with the bike” than his rivals.

Zarco: "A pity" our target now is just finishing races

Zarco, contesting his first season with the Austrian manufacturer, ended the Jerez race in 14th to bring his 2019 points tally to just seven points – despite having scored in all four races.

The Frenchman was in a more positive mindset arriving to Spain after making progress in a private test at Le Mans, but was seen furious in an FP1 debrief with his KTM crew on Friday.

He went on to finish the race a place behind teammate Pol Espargaro, admitting his grand prix was “tough as usual”.

“I wanted to overtake more riders but was not possible for me,” said Zarco, who had equalled his best KTM qualifying so far with 18th on the grid.

“Really I have been too much limit on the race, losing a lot on acceleration - and then when you lose too much on acceleration, then it's complicated to overtake the riders under braking, because I'm always a bit too far to try something.

“I could keep some pace and I have some overtaking with Pol, but then he took kind of good pace and I could follow him more than half race, and then I lost a little bit the gap.

“I was staying focused to finish the race because at the moment it's the only thing I can go for the target. It's really a pity to have a target to just finish the race but I'm still fighting more with the bike than with the others.

“It's for me a general feeling that we have to bring everything more on the top. We got improvement during the weekend, but still the weak points were the same, so just at a different level.”

Zarco's improved showing compared to Espargaro, who has been managing to extract more from the RC16 so far, allowed him to observe the Spaniard's riding in the race.

But while Espargaro went on to challenge Honda's Jorge Lorenzo in the closing stages of the grand prix, Zarco could not follow his squadmate and wound up six seconds down at the chequered flag.

“What I saw from Pol is that he's also struggling to stop the bike, he went many times wide, but then when he opened the throttle he has more confidence and he has better control than me, with the traction,” Zarco explained.

“He does a lot of things with his hand, his right foot controlling the rear brake, and also maybe his strategy of electronic [set-up]. All this package that he knows well, he was controlling better than me and that gave him the potential to catch Lorenzo.

“Me, I didn't have this potential. I still believed that they will use [up] the tyre, I can catch it back - but no, the tyre is going down same for them and for me. And I had just to finish the race.”

Additional reporting by Lena Buffa

shares
comments
Espargaro "very angry" about Miller clash

Previous article

Espargaro "very angry" about Miller clash

Next article

Silverstone secures one-year extension to MotoGP deal

Silverstone secures one-year extension to MotoGP deal
Load comments
How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Prime

How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Prime

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Prime

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Prime

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the track's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP Prime

How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP

The 2020 MotoGP season was an enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if you thought the world championship was a poorer place without Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape.

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021
The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP Prime

The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP

The headlines after MotoGP's Austrian GP were naturally dominated by Brad Binder's heroics on slicks in the rain. But although seventh was, on the face of it, a fairly average result in the context of his season, that Fabio Quartararo was in contention for victory before the rain at Yamaha's worst venue should sound alarm bells for his rivals

MotoGP
Aug 17, 2021
Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales - but won't fix his big problem Prime

Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales - but won't fix his big problem

The prelude to Maverick Vinales' move to Aprilia has been his tortured exit from Yamaha. But the Spanish rider must put allegations of sabotage, suspensions and unwanted personnel changes aside once he embarks upon his new journey, while Aprilia must find a way to get Vinales firing on all cylinders once again

MotoGP
Aug 16, 2021
The MotoGP rider dilemma facing Petronas SRT for 2022 Prime

The MotoGP rider dilemma facing Petronas SRT for 2022

The final pieces of the 2022 MotoGP rider market have yet to be finalised as Petronas SRT Yamaha faces several obstacles in replacing Valentino Rossi and Franco Morbidelli. SRT’s preferred option has been locked into a KTM deal he doesn’t want, while its other target is managed by Rossi himself and wanted at his VR46 team.

MotoGP
Aug 10, 2021