Motorcycle Racing

Fernandez “crying like a baby” after “very stupid mistake” in Barcelona MotoGP sprint

Raul Fernandez, Trackhouse Racing Team

The Trackhouse Racing rider qualified a career-best third for himself and the American team on Saturday morning at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Fernandez, riding the 2023-spec Aprilia that won last year’s sprint and GP at Barcelona, took the lead on lap three of 12 and quickly broke away from the pack by almost a second.

But on lap five, Fernandez crashed out at Turn 10, which he explained was down to him compensating for a mistake which cost him time at Turn 9.

“Now I feel a little bit better, but before arriving to the box I was crying like a baby,” he said on Saturday after the sprint.

“Honestly, I want to say sorry to the team. I did a very stupid mistake.

“I felt super comfortable today, I felt I had it all under control.

“I think the crash was for a mistake. I was trying to compensate for a mistake I did in the curve before the one I crashed at.”

Raul Fernandez, Trackhouse Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

He added: “I don’t know why; I had a lot of movement in Turn 9. I lost a little bit of time, I felt, but I tried to compensate on the brakes [at Turn 10] and I said ‘fuck, I go wide’.

“But at the moment I tried to close the line and I crashed.

“Was 100% my mistake, I was maybe in that moment the ambition was too much because I didn’t want to lose too much time.

“But it’s part of the game. Honestly, I am happy because we saw we can be here. I saw that we are competitive. Just it’s a question of time.

“We need time. We need to put everything like I want and we are now on a correct way.”

Significant progress for under pressure youngster

Fernandez narrowly missed out on the Moto2 title in 2021 in a season in which he scored a record eight wins for a rookie in the class.

But his time in MotoGP has been lacking in results, with Fernandez scoring just 14 points in 2022 with Tech3 and KTM before moving to Aprilia’s satellite outfit last year – which was RNF Racing at the time.

Raul Fernandez, Trackhouse Racing Team

Raul Fernandez, Trackhouse Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

He had just one grand prix top five all season, fifth at the finale in Valencia, while the start to 2024 has been even tougher.

Albeit not with machine parity to the rest of the Aprilia stable as he is on the 2023-spec (though is set to get the 2024 chassis at some point this season) Fernandez hasn’t breached into the top 10 on a Sunday yet.

With significant pressure being placed on…

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