KTM rider Pol Espargaro commented on the differences between his new and former team, believing them to be polar opposites.
Jumping ship to a new team and new bike is never an easy job. Even less so when the team you’re signing on for has yet to prove itself among the rest of the pack as a full-time participant. Despite this, both KTM and Pol Espargaro have proven they are committed to formulating a successful inaugural season for the team.
That feat will certainly come easier said than done, as both the manufacturer and the riders have a lot to work on, but in the case of Pol Espargaro it appears that the young Spaniard is finding the highly different philosophy of KTM’s design to be working in his favor already:
“For me it’s much easier to ride this bike than the Yamaha. The only problem is that we are slow. We are slow even though the bike is shaking, we are not profiting from this.
With this bike, it’s quite different, when you push, you get the laptime. It’s not the same as the Yamaha that you need to ride smooth when you want to lower the laptime. The philosophy is black and white.
This is the beginning, the bike doesn’t have a personality still. We are building it. We are going to improve the bike, I think we know what is the character of the bike and we need to improve it.” – Pol Espargaro
While the KTM boys Espargaro and Bradley Smith placed outside of the top 15 in Qatar’s race, they didn’t exactly disappoint. Sure, it would have been nice if KTM was thrown a couple of points, but – as Pol mentioned – the team is still building the bike and has yet to find its personality. If they can nail that, they’ll come through the pack tearing.