Motorcycle Racing

Pedrosa won’t be tempted out of MotoGP retirement after “rewarding” Jerez sprint

Dani Pedrosa, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Pedrosa won 31 grands prix and finished runner-up three times in the championship with Honda in a MotoGP career that spanned from 2006 to the end of 2018.

Since retiring, Pedrosa joined KTM as an official test rider and has been instrumental in helping develop the bike into a race-winning package.

Making his second wildcard outing in four years this weekend at the Spanish GP, Pedrosa has been on sensational form having topped FP1, ended Friday third overall, qualified sixth and finished in that position in the race.

Pedrosa was just 1.738 seconds behind sprint winner and team-mate Brad Binder, while Jack Miller was third to create a “very rewarding” result for the Spaniard.

When asked if he could follow in the footsteps of numerous car racers over the years in making comebacks from retirement, Pedrosa replied: “But car racing is not the same as bike racing.

“No, I’m fine. I’m very happy, I’m enjoying very much what I’m doing.

“I was in the group, I was sixth, but I could see one and two fighting and at the end Jack went to third. Two bikes on the podium, my bike very close, it’s very rewarding.”

Dani Pedrosa, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Pedrosa did have the opportunity to continue his MotoGP career into 2019 with Petronas Yamaha, but elected to retire having grown weary of the numerous injury battles he faced in his time.

A major factor behind Pedrosa’s wildcard outing at Jerez has been a desire from himself and KTM to better understand how the bike behaves in a race situation.

Noting after the sprint that “everything feels weaker” on a MotoGP bike now when running in a pack, he says the feeling of riding is “two different worlds” from when he raced.

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“In the past, already at the end of my career you could feel it, but anyway the wings or aerodynamics were not like they are now,” he added.

“And even when you were in the slipstream or alone, yes you could feel a tiny difference, but it was pretty much similar.

“Now it’s two different worlds, there’s a huge gap between one thing and the other. That’s something important because the other bikes affect your bike a lot.”

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