Last weekend, Pedro Acosta surprised by achieving the second position in the Moto3 race at the Qatar GP, in his first experience as a World Cup rider. The very young Spanish talent (16 years old) from Red Bull KTM Ajo reaped the fruits of the good work he did during the preseason, completing a team double with his teammate Jaume Masiá in first place. The reigning champion of the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup explains in this interview facilitated by his team how he experienced the Qatar Grand Prix and how he is facing his debut season in the World Championship.
Last weekend, at your debut Grand Prix, you took the podium and even fought for victory. What did this mean to you?
Last Sunday’s result was a consequence of all the work done. Since the November test we have worked hard to get ready for the first race, even more than looking for a good time. For all this, getting on the podium meant a lot to me. But, more than the position, what marked me the most was how the race and our performance went.
What was the first thing that crossed your mind when you crossed the finish line?
When I saw the reaction of the team, I was happy. All the work we had done during the winter had paid off. However, I was left with the bittersweet taste of not having been able to get the victory.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo has not given me a team, I have given myself a family
Did you expect to be in front of the inaugural Grand Prix of the 2021 season?
You don’t get what you want, you get what you work for. This winter I have spent many hours training on a motorcycle. We were ready for the race. However, we have to keep working and learning, as we have to improve some aspects, such as our lap time.
How was your arrival at Red Bull KTM Ajo de Moto3?
The Red Bull KTM Ajo has not given me a team, it has given me a family. I have a professional environment that trusts me and that, without a doubt, is something very positive.
Do you think having Jaume Masiá as a teammate will help you in your development?
Yes. The relationship between the two is quite good and we help each other. When we get to circuits that I do not know, especially outside of Europe, his experience will help me to adapt faster.
Do not forget that this is your debut year as a World Cup rider. What goals do you set for yourself?
I face this season without setting any goals for myself. Before the race, we had three days of official test in Qatar that helped me to get to know the circuit well. So this year my goal is to enjoy and get to know the different tracks well. I want to focus on learning and improving the possible mistakes we make from one Grand Prix to the next.
Has the result obtained in the Qatar Grand Prix changed the expectations initially raised with the team?
Not at all. We had worked for it. Maybe not to finish second, since no one is considering being able to get on the podium in his first World Cup race. But we did a great job with the team, from day one we understood each other very well and that has been the key. Even so, this result does not change our objectives.
New circuits will arrive soon for you. How do you face that challenge and how do you prepare for it?
In this regard, the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup has helped me a lot. The first year I only knew the Jerez circuit and the MotorLand Aragón circuit. It is a very demanding competition, although it is clear that not as much as the World Cup. In addition, I have a great human team behind me that will help me adapt to the new routes. His experience plus the good relationship with Jaume will make me see clearly all those things that I do not understand ”.
How are you approaching the third consecutive week of work in Qatar and what goals are you setting for the Doha Grand Prix?
We started our third week of work in Qatar. On the rest days between races, I have been working with the team. This has helped us to further strengthen our personal and work relationship. For this second Grand Prix I don’t set goals for myself. My goal will be to enjoy every outing on the track and have a good time. When we like what we do, it is when things turn out best for us and we are faster ”.