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Espargaro: I’m a better rider than umbrella girl!

After a turbulent start to the 2010 MotoGP season, his first as a full time premier-class rider, Aleix Espargaro has found some consistency with solid points finishes and will be looking to improve further in this weekend's AirAsia British MotoGP at Silverstone.

“Yes progression is coming. At the start of the season, we had a few problems with the bike and with finding the right set-up and I crashed a lot,” he said. “Then we improved a little bit and we finish ninth in Le Mans which is a very difficult circuit. It was a big step up and then we finished eighth in Mugello last time out. We must continue this way to make big steps.”

The new Silverstone track is of course a big discussion amongst the riders after the switch this year to the Northamptonshire circuit from Donington.

The 20-year-old was full of praise for the new track, “The Silverstone circuit is very beautiful. I looked at the circuit yesterday and I did a few laps today. It's completely different from all the other circuits we go too. There are so many fast corners.”

It's a family affair for Espargaro as his younger brother Pol races in the 125cc class and he is always on hand to help him, even acting as his 'umbrella man'!

“I think I'm a better rider than umbrella girl,” he admitted. “Before the 125 race I try to be with my brother to help him a little bit and if I have to be his umbrella girl, then that's what I do!

“I think I will finish the MotoGP race and get changed fast and then run to the grid to be Pol's umbrella girl! It will be really strange to race for the first time before my brother,” he added, referring to the revised race schedule for Sunday, which will see Moto2 the first race of the day and the 125cc race after MotoGP.

The likeable Pramac Ducati racer certainly put some smiles on the hundreds of fans in the sunshine yesterday, when he auctioned off the team shirt he was wearing to raise money for the riders charity Riders for Health.

However, he was then subject to some teasing on stage at the popular Day of Champions event on Thursday. With his national team Spain losing in their first World Cup fixture, he responded “It's important how you finish, not how you start.”

The same clearly applies to his MotoGP season and he will be hoping for a great result this weekend in front of the British fans.

by Leandra Graves

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