Les confidences de Quartararo

Les confidences de Quartararo

While Yamaha has offered the services of several engineers from Ducati, Fabio Quartararo confided on the sidelines of the start of the pre-season tests organized at Sepang that their contribution is already being felt.

Fabio Quartararo seems to be smiling again. After a very complicated 2023 season and as he reaches the end of his contract with Yamaha, the French rider saw his supervision changed during the winter. In response to the criticisms made by the former world champion, the Iwata firm seems to have taken the bull by the horns and this has materialized by recruits in the technical field from Ducati.

If he admits that “playing for victory is not enough”, Fabio Quartararo assured the press that he had “much greater potential than last year but we do not yet have a bike to win”. And this comes in part from “the way of working” brought by new technical director Massimo Bertolini and aerodynamic engineer Marco Nicotra. “It’s day and night,” said the Niçois. It’s good for Yamaha. » What particularly delighted “El Diablo” was the desire to see things through to the end provided by these two engineers, when the Japanese are too often on the fence when a problem arises.

Quartararo: “You always have to play on the limit”

“During the shakedown, we tested something that was, let’s say, supposed to give the potential to be faster. But we had technical problems. Max said: ‘We are not giving up, we have to find a solution to make this play work’ and we did it, confided Fabio Quartararo. Before, when it was just Japanese engineers, they said: ‘Maybe it’s too risky, we’ll remove it.’ That’s the mentality, you always have to play on the limit and it’s really starting to come to fruition. » Beyond the aerodynamic field, the 2021 world champion sees a lot of change regarding on-board electronics for which Yamaha is “years behind” according to the French pilot. “We’re trying things that I’ve never tried in the past,” he said happily. I won’t say what I tried but things that I thought were impossible, and ultimately it’s not very bad. » Nevertheless, there is still work to be done to domesticate the 2024 model motorcycle whose “character is much too aggressive”.

Quartararo: “We gained experience”

This does not allow full exploitation of the potential. If he signed the third time this Tuesday behind Jorge Martin and Pedro Acosta, Fabio Quartararo does not want to focus on performance but more on learning. “I would say that we have not progressed but that we have gained experience, information to discover where we need to work,” he confided. I think we need to try lots and lots of electronic settings to really establish our base and work specifically on a lap, the race distance… I think that’s very important. » Despite everything, the Yamaha’s major problem is still there with insufficient grip, an observation shared by the Frenchman’s new teammate, Alex Rins. “It’s something that we have to improve because when the grip is good, the bike has potential,” concluded the Habs. But when there’s little grip, you’re really at the back. » A direction of work which seems already fixed but without certainty as to the remedies which will be provided.

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