‘It’s better than my era’
It’s so close at the top, everyone has made a mistake or two and I can’t wait to see what the second half of the season will bring.
But to see somewhere like Sachsenring where the lap time is 1m 22s or so and there’s only two seconds covering the whole field – it means that you just need to have a little bit of a bad day and you’re in 15th pretty easy! That’s why you see the guys at the front making mistakes – because they’re pushing every single lap. There’s no ‘my bike isn’t great this weekend, I’ll take it easy and finish fourth’ because you could be 14th in the blink of an eye.
It would have suited me to be in a championship like this back in my day, but it wouldn’t have suited the Suzuki, because until we got it right in 1993 it was a very inconsistent motorcycle. One weekend we’d win and the next we’d struggle to be top five – and in a field like this we’d have been lucky to be top 15.
The current era is better than mine was, from a fan’s perspective. Every bike – well, maybe not the KTM yet – has the opportunity to be at the front. The Aprilia is making good progress this year, all the Ducatis right back to Baz and Barbera are sticking them in there, and everyone gets a run at the front at some point.
To me, that makes the whole thing so much more exciting, and as a rider, well… when you get here on a Thursday you better make sure that you’re ready to go, to get as many laps in, be it wet, dry or damp. You’ve got to be ready for whatever’s thrown at you, because you don’t know what’s coming at you on Sunday and you better be prepared.
‘You could be 14th in the blink of an eye’