SEA­SON PRE­VIEW Reign­ing Moto3 champ Danny Kent knows that his world ti­tle will count for ‘I feel as though I have a point to prove in Moto2’

Motorcycle News (UK) - - Motogp Preview - By Matthew Birt MCN CON­TRIB­U­TOR

You would­nõt think a rider that won six races and a his­toric world ti­tle last sea­son is go­ing into 2016 feel­ing like theyõve a big point to prove. But thatõs pre­cisely where Danny Ken­tõs mind is at head­ing into the first show­down of the sea­son in Qatar this week­end.

The eu­pho­ria of be­com­ing Bri­tainõs first Grand Prix world cham­pion since Barry Sheene some 38 years ear­lier evap­o­rated quickly and the mo­ti­va­tion driv­ing the 22-year-old now is to show last yearõs suc­cess was no fluke.

All the painstak­ing work Kent did in en­hanc­ing his rep­u­ta­tion last sea­son is on the line again now heõs back in Moto2 for the first time since a de­flat­ing and de­mor­al­is­ing ven­ture in to the in­ter­me­di­ate class in 2013.

Ken­tõs as­sault on Moto2 in 2016 though is a com­pletely dif­fer­ent propo­si­tion. Heõs armed with the Kalex chas­sis that has be­come so domi- nant that 24 of the 30 rid­ers lin­ing up un­der the Lo­sail In­ter­na­tional Cir­cuit flood­lights will be strad­dling the Ger­man frame.

No re­treat, no sur­ren­der this time around. There can be no ex­cuses. Even more so con­sid­er­ing he has moved back to Moto2 with the Leop­ard Rac­ing team and crew that helped him se­cure the Moto3 crown in a nail-bit­ing fi­nal round de­cider against Miguel Oliveira in Va­len­cia last Novem­ber. And no­body is more acutely aware of that than Kent.

ÒIN 2013 ev­ery­body knew I was­nõt on the best bike. IÕM rid­ing a bike now that is win­ning races and win­ning cham­pi­onships, so I donõt have any ex­cuses. I feel like I have a point to prove be­cause if I had jumped straight to Mo­togp a few peo­ple would have said I only did that be­cause I did s**t last time in Moto2,ó said Kent, who is am­bi­tious but also a real­ist.

Òthere is no point try­ing to ex­pect what I did in Moto3. IÕM re­al­is­tic and not stupid by say­ing IÕM go­ing to win the cham­pi­onship in my first year back,ó he added.

Kent had lit­tle time to re­flect on his record­break­ing Moto3 suc­cess be­fore he threw him­self head first into plans for 2016.

ÒI had a cou­ple of Moto2 tests straight af­ter Va­len­cia, so did­nõt get much chance to get used to it. About a week af­ter the last race I was fly­ing home from Spain, bored and with time to think, and it sud­denly dawned on me what hap­pened. I was like Ôbloody hell, I am world cham­pion.õ I am go­ing to be a world cham­pion for life and noth­ing will change that. IÕM over it now be­cause Iõve got a new chal­lenge to look for­ward to,ó he added.

Kent does­nõt want to get to Va­len­cia in midNovem­ber though look­ing back in anger.

He said: ÒIF we come to the last race of the sea­son and I havenõt achieved a podium I will be dis­ap­pointed, but I be­lieve in my­self enough to do it.ó

The fact that so many rid­ers are on the Kalex with the same Dun­lop tyres and Honda mo­tor means Moto2 is a class where rider tal­ent can stand­out.

And Kent added: ÒAS a rider you can learn a lot and you can only make your­self bet­ter from it

Hav­ing turned down a Pra­mac Du­cati ride in Mo­togp for 2017, Kent isn’t plan­ning on wait­ing much longer for a premier class chance. He said: “We all want to go to Mo­togp and it is a risk be­cause if I have a s**t year then the op­por­tu­nity to go might never come. (Alex) Rins has shown that you can win races in the first year and I am sure if we can do that af­ter win­ning the ti­tle in 2015 we should have the door open to move to a few Mo­togp teams in 2017. It all de­pends on my re­sults this year be­cause I won’t be get­ting a Mo­togp ride based on what I did last year, even if I was world cham­pion.”

first year was a bit of a disas­ter. Peo­ple saw me work hard and it was good for me to do well on that bike be­cause it made peo­ple think that if they put me on some­thing else I’d do well,” said Lowes.

Life is good. But it can be bet­ter. A Moto2 world ti­tle will make life great, and you’d bet­ter be­lieve Lowes when he says he can do it.

The 25-year-old, who will ride a Kalex for for­mer 125GP world cham­pion Fausto Gresini, said: “There is no doubt in my mind that I am ca­pa­ble

Kent’s re­mained with his ti­tlewin­ning Leop­ard squad in Moto2 MO­TOGP BY 2017 Mcphee has sights set on big­ger things Mcphee reck­ons the Peu­geot could be his key to suc­cess

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