Giacomo Agostini calls for Bagnaia to become a star: “We need a character”

Francesco Bagnaia can win his maiden MotoGP championship then become the new superstar of the sport, says legend Giacomo Agostini.
Giacomo Agostini, Yamaha anniversary lap, Dutch MotoGP Race
Giacomo Agostini, Yamaha anniversary lap, Dutch MotoGP Race

Bagnaia enters the Malaysian MotoGP, the penultimate round of the season, having overcome a 91-point deficit in the MotoGP standings behind Fabio Quartararo to now lead by 14 points.

He can seal the championship at Sepang this weekend but the greater goal could be to inherit Valentino Rossi’s status as an icon of the sport.

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"We need a character, someone who imposes himself continuously, who conquers and makes the fans dream,” the legendary Agostini, a 15-time world champion, said to La Repubblica. 

“If every year there is a different champion, people will think that anyone can lead in MotoGP. 

“I'm sure, we need a star."

Joan Mir and Quartararo won their first championships in the past two years and now Ducati rider Bagnaia is on the verge of a maiden title.

Marc Marquez, who missed much of this season due to injury but may emerge as a serious threat in 2023, had previously won four titles in a row.

Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP, Australian MotoGP 15 October
Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP, Australian MotoGP 15 October

But Agostini, the 80-year-old Italian who has won more titles than anyone in the premier class, wants to see his countryman Bagnaia establish himself as No1.

"I wish him so,” Agostini said. “In the standings he has surpassed poor Quartararo and I think no one stops him. 

“Maybe he becomes champion already in Sepang, although in the bikes it is always better to wait for the mathematics. Anything can always happen.”

Agostini said about Yamaha rider Quartararo: "I'm sorry to see him like this. He's good, but today Ducati is Ducati. 

“With Pecco the bike forms an exceptional combination, a beautiful thing that has blossomed in an overbearing way. He just needs to finish first once again and that's pretty much it."

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