So not like the Barry Sheene, Kenny Roberts days when they wouldn’t have even gone to bed?

Marcel Schrötter:

I honestly wish I raced back in those days. I like all the commitments and the training and stuff but sometimes it feels a bit like you’re a machine. It’d be great to break out a little.

The training regime can be pretty hard when you’re alone so it’s always easier when you train with a friend and that’s why it’s great fun now training with my friend Jack [Miller]. You can push each other and have fun as you go. It’s training, but the time goes quickly because it’s also fun.

Really the only proper training you can do is to ride the race bike because even if you do quite a variety of strong training you can still get off the race bike feeling sore because that is the only thing that truly uses those muscles. The braking forces etc on the bike are so high.

Your experience in Moto2 is interesting because you’ve ridden the Kalex, Tech3 and Suter. Would you say that there is a meaningful difference between the hardware?

Marcel Schrötter:

All of these three did feel very different. I would say that the Suter and Tech3 were closer, but the Kalex is different to the other two in a positive way.

People often say that the Tech3 is not so hot but I had some really great races on it. In pure speed terms the bike wasn’t the fastest because of the aerodynamics but there were tracks where the good points of the bike like the front end allowed me to do well. But the new Dunlop tyre the next year took the front-end advantage away from us so the pluses and minuses are very small.

The Suter was something similar in that it was really hard to understand in the beginning because the balance and drive of the bike are so different but once you understand it, it’s a great bike. One of its strengths was its drive grip, when you picked it up you could really get the drive out of corners. The front was also really strong and solid.

Last year I couldn’t do much with my hand because of injury but P2 in qualifying was possible because of how the Suter worked allowing me to carry speed.

Both of these bikes have good points but the Kalex’ strength is that it’s an all-rounder with few weak points. It’s quite easy to ride in comparison with the others.

The Kalex is also easier to set up than the others and it’s easier to get to a setting which gives confidence. You can take settings which are in the middle of those that the other riders are using and already go quite fast.

Looking at your results this year, you’ve got far more consistent front running pace – is this from experience or was there something in particular which made the difference?

Marcel Schrötter:

I always knew that I had it in me and just needed the team to give me the opportunity.

Last year it was a little bit difficult on the Suter. In the first tests we weren’t even in the top 20 and everywhere we went we were starting from zero. This year though we have all the information from the other Kalexes. The base setting of the Kalex is just more versatile.

What you are seeing is a good rider with a good team. I don’t need to worry about them understanding what to do, I just come in, tell them what the feeling is and they already know what to do. It gives you confidence.

With my crew chief, I only need to say very few things and he already knows what to do. Sometimes talking less is more.

Did you tighten up at the end of the Misano race because you knew the podium was possible after all those years?

Marcel Schrötter:

Oh no I was just enjoying it. Things were coming easily and I didn’t have to override the bike. There are always nerves but these were good ones.

I was riding within myself to the end and was going to fight for a result at the end. The fact that me and Miguel were closing on Passini was also positive. He had good points and so did I but he was great on the corner exit which meant that I was always too far away to outbrake him.

In retrospect maybe I should have been more aggressive 3 or 4 laps from the end but this is to do with experience of riding at the front. I think I was faster than him and maybe I should have passed him earlier, pulled away and come second. But a podium is more than OK though – rather a podium than the gravel trap!

Now that I’ve got that, it’s time for a win. I know that Pecco [Bagnaia] is incredibly fast over the first few laps and if I can stay with him for those laps I can be with him at the end, I’m 100% sure of that.

So you feel that Pecco’s technique is basically to try to destroy everyone at the start of the race with some super fast laps?

Marcel Schrötter:

I think he has been trying to do that over the past few races. OK, in Austria he was fighting to the last corner with Miguel, but that is basically what he was doing and it’s something we need to manage.

So it seems that your career is in a bit of a virtuous circle at the moment?

Marcel Schrötter:

Sure, but things don’t come all by themselves we are also working hard to get what we do. Off-track the training never stops, the good thing though is that we now have the tools to get the job done and that is a good feeling.

…and we can’t discuss Misano without talking about Romano Fenati, what is your opinion?

Marcel Schrötter:

I don’t think there’s much to say, he should clearly be banned because he has put someone’s life in danger.

Banned from racing or just for some races?

Marcel Schrötter:

Oh, I think at least a couple of years. He’s still young so leave it a couple of years and then see how things are after all it’s not the first time something like this has happened. Maybe he’ll calm down and decide that he wants to change.

It’s hard for him because he put someone’s life in danger but at the same time you don’t like destroying a career.

Are these kind of 'optimistic' riding techniques common in Moto2?

Marcel Schrötter:

We’re all on the same bike so you have to find an edge somewhere. You can’t really pass because of speed or brakes so you are always looking for some way. Doing something like putting your hand on another bike as it travels at speed is totally different to that though.

Is there ever anything like this which happens mid-pack, away from the cameras?

 Marcel Schrötter:

Well, sometimes similar but not touching or brake grabbing. Whatever happens at the front also happens at the back but the cameras aren’t there so people don’t talk about it.

Do you think having a field so close together where 20 riders can be separated by a second encourages riders to try such desperate techniques?

Marcel Schrötter:

The closeness makes it difficult because you know in the race that even if you make a small mistake you may never get the time back so in a way it makes you ride more conservatively. Moto2 encourages consistency and a lack of mistakes. In Barcelona I made a small mistake and went from P2 to P8 and couldn’t get it back again.

The problem with Moto2 though is that you have to ride at 99% all the time to get any kind of result.

So I guess you welcome the shake-up next year with the Triumph engine and electronics?

Marcel Schrötter:

Yes, I’m really looking forward to that. We’ve had a long time with this engine and gearbox and we’ve had quite a few problems with it. We’ve had some crashes because of the gearbox so this will be good.

A new engine with particularly a new gearbox will put a bit of fun back.

Apparently we won’t have traction control, but at the moment we don’t use it anyway so that will be fine. There still isn’t so much power that we need it.

Also the electronics for next year are just the start so we will see how they change in the future.

These changes will show up the good teams. There are some teams who are already testing and getting ready and others that are just carrying on as usual. It’ll reward the teams who put in the work.

…and Dynavolt should be one of those

Marcel Schrötter:

Right, I believe so

Have you re-signed for the team?

Marcel Schrötter:

Yes I signed a two year deal with them so should be well placed for the changes. The plan is to do well this year, go for the title next year and then to MotoGP

So if I put some money on you to win next year my money would be safe?

Marcel Schrötter:


Thanks Marcel

Marcel Schrötter:




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