Bagnaia: “I told Bezzecchi to stay, it’s better for both”

MotoGP champion Francesco Bagnaia says he gave advice to Marco Bezzecchi, which was to reject Pramac Ducati.
Francesco Bagnaia, Marco Bezzecchi Ducati MotoGP Catalunya 2023
Francesco Bagnaia, Marco Bezzecchi Ducati MotoGP Catalunya 2023

Clear at the top of the MotoGP standings by over 60 points from Jorge Martin, Bagnaia is in a commanding position to retain his title.

The #1 has been in fine form over the last few rounds, but that hasn’t stopped Bezzecchi from being one of his toughest opponents.

The two Italian’s split victories at Assen, while Bezzecchi bettered the world champion in the sprint at Silverstone before crashing out of the main race - Bagnaia then completed his third double of the year last time out in Austria.

Riding a year-old machine compared to Bagnaia’s full factory bike, Bezzecchi has been a revelation in 2023 which is why the Italian brand wanted to put him aboard a 2024 machine next season. 

But Bezzecchi rejected that chance and Bagnaia has revealed the advice he gave to his fellow VR46 academy rider.

"We spoke about it," said Bagnaia. "It’s better for both - in case we lose, we have an excuse! We don’t have the same bike! 

"But we spoke about it. My suggestion, my advice, was to follow being in the same team. I [understand] the human side. 

"When you feel fine with your team, even if you have a competitive but older bike, you can fight for the top positions. 

"We can see when Marco Simoncelli won in 2008 - they removed the factory bike but he still won because the human side was important."

After his convincing double at the Red Bull Ring, high praise came the way of Bagnaia from both Fabio Quartararo and Marc Marquez, who called the Italian unbeatable at the moment.

But Bagnaia feels as though that’s far from the case: "No. I am enjoying it. I have a great feeling with my team. We work a lot, improving our situation. We start not in the best way on Friday, but improve every time. 

"In Austria we discovered something to improve our performance. This is one of my favourite tracks.

"I’ve never had a good result, the best was sixth in 2020. Last year was competitive, I started on the front row, but was unlucky on the first corner. 

"Like always, if we work well, we can be fast and competitive to fight for the top positions."

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