We spoke to Mooney VR46 MotoGP rider, Luca Marini, ahead of the Thai Grand Prix and he had some interesting answers to our questions.
Interviewed by: Joshua Varghese
Bike India: Are you looking forward to the Thai GP?
Luca Marini: We are here in Thailand and this is a good track for me with good memories. I hope the weather can be good and let’s see what we can do. The goal is to be in the top six positions.
BI: What are your biggest challenges going to be in Thailand?
LM: Here, the difficult thing and the challenge is that we are here for the first time with a MotoGP bike. Since 2019 we have not ridden here so in the beginning it will be difficult for me. FP1 will be tough. The bike will not be perfect, especially on the electronics side, we need to work a lot. The tyres here are really stiff, really hard. So it is difficult to ride with these hard tyres and it will be a challenge in general but I want to stay in the top 10 during free practice and then also have a good qualifying to start at the front to have a good race.
BI: Could you tell us about your transition from Moto2 to MotoGP?
LM: It was a good journey. I had a good time in Moto2. I improved a lot, especially in a personal way and also as a rider. I worked a lot on my weakness and improved my strongest points. At the beginning of my career I never expected to arrive in MotoGP but every year my confidence improved and every year it felt stronger than the year before. I saw an opportunity to jump on a MotoGP and when I arrived in MotoGP, everything was incredible and I understood how difficult it was to be one of the top riders of MotoGP but this is my target, my goal.
BI: MotoGP machinery has more electronics than the Moto2 bikes you used to ride. How easy or difficult has that transition been?
LM: It was very difficult because the electronics of the bike are very important and you need to spend a lot of time with your engineer trying to make everything perfect because if the electronics are not good, then it is more difficult to ride the bike. So you need to be very focussed when you are riding to understand which area you need to work on and then in the box [garage], work with your engineer and try to make the map of the throttle or engine braking a little bit better.
BI: Has the 2022 season been going according to plan for you so far?
LM: I would say that it was going according to my plan at the beginning of the season but sincerely I expected more from the first part of the season. I expected to be at this level from the beginning of the season because I felt really strong in that moment but it was not easy because we had a new bike, a new team. Everybody needed to learn and understand. Now we reached a very good level and we are fighting for the top position in every race. So this makes me really satisfied.
BI: Do you have different favourite tracks for MotoGP and Moto2 or is it the same track for both?
LM: In Moto2, I really like to ride in Mugello. On a MotoGP bike, riding in Mugello is difficult but the layout is incredible, so I like it a lot. With a MotoGP bike, different tracks became better. Tracks like Silverstone, Barcelona and Misano are better on a MotoGP bike. With more speed, more power, better tyres, you feel better on the track.