Miguel Oliveira says he is excited at the prospect of MotoGP returning to his native Portugal for the final round of the 2020 MotoGP World Championship season at Portimao.

The European nation is no stranger to MotoGP burning rubber on its Tarmac having hosted the series on 14 occasions between 1987 and 2012; 13 of those took place at the Estoril Circuit, with one anomalous event named Portuguese but actually held at the Spanish Jarama venue.

For its big 2020 comeback though on November 22, MotoGP will make its long-awaited debut at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve, better known as Portimao, located on the southern Algarve region.

In what is turning out to be a big year for Portimao, not only will it host MotoGP for the first time but it has also been included on the revised 2020 Formula 1 calendar too.

A long-running fixture on the WorldSBK schedule – which inaugurated the venue in 2008 – Portimao’s undulations, sweeping bends and tricky bumps have made it a favourite among the Superbike riders, with Portugal’s only MotoGP rider Oliveira excited for his rivals to sample it for the first time.

“Exciting news! As a Portuguese rider I would like to have a home race and it is happening at the end of the season, so I couldn’t be happier the race is taking place at Portimao. It is a super technical track, very demanding so I think it will be fun to race MotoGP there.”

Though inevitably overshadowed by Brad Binder’s victory on the sister KTM, Oliveira enjoyed his own personal landmark last time out in Brno with a career-best result of sixth position – which in turn doubled up as Tech 3’s best finish since switching to KTM - achieved from 13th on the grid.

Making up for the disappointment of Jerez when he was swiped out of a PB starting position of fifth, ironically by Binder, Oliveira praised his future team-mate and says is shows KTM are an increasing threat across both teams.

“The weekend in Brno was going quite well, Friday was a positive day being inside the top three but I made a mistake in FP3 and I crashed on my fast lap. Going through Q1 I almost got it by a little bit but I had to start from the fifth row, which is tricky.

“You have to make clever overtakes and not go backwards. We looked like we had the pace to challenge for the podium which is positive, so at the end of the day I need to be happy about my riding.

“Every rider wants to get the first win. I don’t compare myself with Brad or Pol because in this case Pol was the rider who wanted to give KTM the first win because he has been there since day one. I am happy with Brad for his race because he rode well.”

 

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