Aleix: Pol Espargaro ‘has always been my idol, I couldn’t avoid crying’

Aleix Espargaro says he couldn’t hold back tears when seeing Pol Espargaro before his final race as a full-time MotoGP rider.
Aleix Espargaro, Pol Espargaro, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November
Aleix Espargaro, Pol Espargaro, Valencia MotoGP test, 8 November

Aleix is set for his 14th season in MotoGP next year which is the most of any rider currently on the grid.

His brother Pol, who was the second oldest rider on the grid behind Aleix, managed to compete in the premier class for 10 years before KTM chose to replace him with Moto2 world champion Pedro Acosta.

But although Aleix is older than his brother, the Aprilia rider called Pol his ‘idol’ after the Spaniard left his role as a full-time racer.

Speaking to after the Valencia MotoGP: Aleix said: "Pol has been always my idol even if I'm older than him. When we arrived at the world championship, he was very fast immediately, winning races and he won the Moto2 title. 

“I've always been by his side so today was very emotional. On the grid, I went to hug him and I couldn't avoid crying before the race. It was not easy. 

“The last lap with him was very nice. This year has been very tough you know because you cannot imagine how Pol has suffered and we, his family, we suffered a lot with him. 

“His injury in Portimao was a very big one and I'm very happy to see him happy and smiling. Next year he has a new role but for me you know I don't really care where he works I want to see him happy and I think he's happy now." 

Pol Espargaro will continue his partnership with KTM in 2024 after agreeing to become their test rider alongside Dani Pedrosa.

But before that the Spaniard is looking forward to winding down after a difficult 2023: "I need to take some rest. I need to recover myself a little bit. It's been a while since I don't feel as competitive as I should feel, but also with the confidence that I need to perform to be beside these guys. 

“These guys are talented, young and extremely fit. If you don't have all of these things, then you are too far away so you enjoy it. 

“It's important to enjoy it but I will need to recover part of the Pol that left in Portimao."

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