Aleix: Martin more speed, potential - but Pecco is number one

Aleix Espargaro is backing friend and countryman Jorge Martin to provide a title challenge to reigning MotoGP champion Francesco Bagnaia, depending on ‘how Ducati manage this’.
Jorge Martin, Aleix Espargaro, MotoGP, Spanish MotoGP, 29 April
Jorge Martin, Aleix Espargaro, MotoGP, Spanish MotoGP, 29 April

The Pramac rider heads into the summer break as Bagnaia’s nearest threat, highlighted by a close victory over the factory star in the German MotoGP.

It was Martin’s first win since his rookie 2021 campaign while two other Sunday podiums, plus a pair of Sprint race wins, have helped put him one point clear of VR46’s Marco Bezzecchi, although still 35 points from Bagnaia.

“For me, Martin has more speed, more potential. But for the moment Pecco is a better rider because his number says that he's the number one in the championship,” said Aprilia rider Espargaro.

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“For me, in terms of speed, Jorge faster. The first thing he had to do was to find the stability. He's finding it and from this point on for sure he will improve his speed.

“He's a really talented rider, really fast and for me he's a rider who can fight for the title.”

But a satellite rider is yet to win the MotoGP crown (Sete Gibernau, Marco Melandri and Franco Morbidelli have finished title runner-up) and Espargaro admits Martin’s hopes of making history could depend on how Ducati handles the situation.

“He has the same bike - not the same team for sure as Pecco, but the same bike,” Espargaro said.

“But we have to see how Ducati manage this, if they want that a private satellite team can win the title... Let’s see how they do.”

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