Ana Carrasco made history last year by becoming the first female to win a solo motorcycle world championship as she clinched the World Supersport 300 title by just a single point ahead of Mika Perez.

The Spaniard made worldwide headlines for her title triumph and has secured fresh backing from reigning World Superbike champions Provec, who run the factory Kawasaki squad, as she bids to defend her crown in 2019.

Crash.net:

After all the drama of last year’s final race, how did you feel at the end of that race in Magny-Cours?

Ana Carrasco:

I’ve got to say that the whole race was very difficult because we had some problems and had to start from 25th, it was difficult at the beginning but it all came out well in the end because I won the championship.

Crash.net:

Perhaps starting so low and with so many problems it took your mind off the championship and reduced the pressure?

Ana Carrasco:

Honestly, during the race I didn’t feel a lot of pressure because we knew that the championship was so difficult from then.

It was worse previously during the weekend because we knew it was possible and we were having so many problems. It was during the weekend when we could think that the pressure was higher, I so much wanted to be on top in qualifying and the problems made that impossible.

The race itself was fine. I just took it pass by pass without thinking too much of the championship. I was mainly concerned with the changes we had made to the bike because of the issues we’d had and I wasn’t quite sure if the bike was working well or not, I was just waiting for a possible explosion!

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Crash.net:

Did you know if you’d won the championship at the end?

Ana Carrasco:

When I crossed the finishing line I had no idea. My team were telling me on the board that I’d finished P10 but I knew I’d finished 13th so I was waiting very nervously.

Crash.net:

Did you send Scott Deroue a Christmas card? [Deroue held a title-clinching position over the opening laps before retiring from the race]

Ana Carrasco:

[Laughing] No, no, but we are still good friends because I know him well from being team mates in the past.

Crash.net:

Do you think that the Kawasaki is the bike to be on?

Ana Carrasco:

I think the Kawasaki this year was the best for sure but that was mainly at the beginning of the season because they changed the rules and after that we struggled quite a lot because the bike started to have problems. The last four races were difficult for us after the rule changes and you can see that in the results. Despite all that I think the Kawasaki was still the best overall package, it was just that we couldn’t use all of it.

Crash.net:

Why?

Ana Carrasco:

We had to use less rpm than at the beginning and also add weight and these changes were difficult to manage. The bike had been well set up to race as standard so learning to race with the changes was challenging.

The weight in particular was giving us problems with the weight transfer and it made it more difficult to find a set up. We basically had to use 2000 less rpm and add 14kg.

Crash.net:

But this was the same for the whole field, right?

Ana Carrasco:

Sure, but it affected some riders more than others, some like me who had found really good settings were disrupted more than others. The affect also depended on the weight of the rider and I don’t weigh so much.

Follow Page 2 for the full interview with Ana Carrasco...

 

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