Joe Roberts looking to the future: “The stat is I’m a grand prix winner”

Joe Roberts has been heavily linked with a switch to MotoGP following his strong start to the 2024 Moto2 campaign.

Joe Roberts, Moto2 race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April
Joe Roberts, Moto2 race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April

Leading the Moto2 standings thanks to three second place finishes in succession, Joe Roberts has put his name in a prime position to be considered for MotoGP.

Roberts has been linked with a move to the Trackhouse Racing team, and therefore could become the first American in MotoGP since Nicky Hayden, in 2015.

But for that to happen Roberts will need to continue his good form and avoid a slump like in 2020.

Speaking to, Roberts recalled the 2020 season, saying: “It was a funny thing, the year started off with so much promise.

“I don’t need to say it, but 2020 was such a weird year. I had that start, kind of like we’ve been doing this year with the team, building all this momentum and confidence from the test to the first race. Ready to hit the next round and continue that strong form.”

Moving on to this season, Roberts has been nothing short of brilliant, however, the Californian-born rider was not impressed with how his season began in Qatar.

“Qatar was shit. Don’t sugar coat it.” laughed Roberts. “It was a weird weekend; an information gathering weekend.

“The first weekend back with the team, there are so many things that need to be worked out. The fact we’ve been so competitive right away, and where all the guys are all brand new to the team, it’s honestly incredible it’s going as well as it is.

“Obviously, it’s because everyone’s so good. But the fact we’re working together and it’s working, that’s insane.

“It’s funny, there are so many thoughts that go through your head when you’re trying to do this sport, all the time. I think the last few years I’ve been very alone in these thoughts.

“I haven’t had someone as a guy that – not just John (Hopkins), even my assistant – I mean… the direct year after I left American Racing I literally travelled completely alone the whole year.

“I got on well with the new team and they’re nice people, but I somehow didn’t feel like part of it.

“I felt like a rider hired to be on the team, you know? Which is so different to now. And going to John.”

While Roberts’ success in Moto2 in the form of race wins is limited, the 26-year-old is a grand prix winner.

Special circumstances allowed him to take victory in Portimao as many leading contenders crashed out, but Roberts is keen to point out that he’s a winner nonetheless, ahead of a potential switch to the premier class.

Joe Roberts, Moto2 race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April
Joe Roberts, Moto2 race, Spanish MotoGP, 28 April

“The stat is I’m a Grand Prix winner,” said Roberts. “I don’t need to say it, it was a strange race not having all the guys running up front in the race, but it is what it is.

“It’s nice to have won it. It kind of restarted my season. I was stringing together a pretty good season, and in Barcelona I was running up front by like four seconds before I crashed out.

“I was fourth in the championship at one point. It wasn’t a bad season for me, but I don’t really dwell on those things.

“I don’t like looking at the past. It’s a nice memory to hear the national anthem and run up front, it’s experience being at the front – a bunch of riders taking off, and then crossing the finish line first. That’s an experience, even if not everyone was in the race.

“It’s something I know will be valuable for me, this year hopefully, running up front and trying to win. It’s all about those things I said before – winning a race, getting on the podium.

“Once you’ve unlocked that… it was nice to get that off my back. Unlocking the win.”

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