Dani Pedrosa gives his thoughts on KTM substitute role

Dani Pedrosa says the decision for him to wild card at this weekend’s Misano MotoGP was a sudden call.
Dani Pedrosa, KTM MotoGP Jerez 2023
Dani Pedrosa, KTM MotoGP Jerez 2023

Pedrosa, who was set to test at the post-race test as development towards 2024 continues, will now race in his second MotoGP round of the season after already competing at Jerez.

Unlike Aprilia test rider Lorenzo Savadori or Honda’s Stefan Bradl, Pedrosa’s role as the lead test man for KTM has seen him focus more on working on the RC16 away from race weekends, whereas Savadori and Bradl have been regular attendees as wild cards over the last few seasons.

"It’s my second wild card this season, back to a familiar track," said Pedrosa. "My main goal is to test things that we’ve already tried, with riders and with track conditions of a weekend. 

"As everybody knows the front tyre is the main issue, and the slipstream. It would be good for the team. 

"It’s true that Ducati are here, very strong, and testing a lot. We will focus on our things, trying to adapt to the format which is slightly different to last time. 

"Step by step. We cannot replicate [a test] because we test by ourselves, three bikes maximum. We don’t follow each other. This is something that happens when you are behind someone."

Pedrosa also spoke about the recent rumours surrounding KTM possibly running a substitute program for 2024, which would allow for more wild cards while using one of their riders as a reserve.

A situation that could also impact him and the testing program, Pedrosa gave very little away: "We haven’t spoken about next year’s wild cards. At the moment, testing, yes."

That said, Pedrosa said he could be open to more wild cards: "We will see! We have another side story, or a main story, so let’s see how that finishes. 

"Let’s see what we do, how we organise ourselves. At the end, a wild card comes because it has a purpose."

Although Pedrosa will be testing parts that have already been used on the 2023 bike, perfecting them for 2024 is one of the main reasons for his late call up to wild card at Misano.

"It was more difficult,” said Pedrosa about the wild card. Things evolve. Suddenly we decide that this was another good chance for us."

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