Few hours before the KTM Super Test, we spent few minutes to have a chat with local rider Jonathan MANZI (I – Gas Gas). Rovetta resident, the Gas Gas rider gave us his impressions on the track and also what represent to him this Grand Prix Acerbis of Italy in his town…
Hi Jonathan, first of all, how do you feel?
Jonathan MANZI: “Hello! I feel pretty good! I start to feel the pressure for this Grand Prix at home but I did my best to prepare well these three days racing!”
There are a lot of riders living in Bergamo region. But you, you are from Rovetta… Is it an extra pressure?
J.M: “Oh yes, to be the local rider of the stage brings you an extra pressure. I already know the track and the special tests but in any case, I have to give my best I have to be aware to avoid any mistakes. It’s good to always attack but a mistake can arrive pretty soon. I’ll do everything to make a nice race!”
You must have all your family and friends ready to push behind you…
J.M: “No doubt! Here, it is my country, my town in which I’m living for many years now. I have numerous friends here and also many people that know me so it’s clear that I will have many “tifosi” pushing behind me this weekend.”
What do you think of the Special Tests?
J.M: “The special tests are really typical from the Bergamasche Valley. The Cross Test in Plarina has been drawn in a river and it will be very rocky. The Xtreme, with the rain of those last days, will be much more difficult as it is on the flank of a valley and it will be a bit muddy. It will be very selective! On the side of the Enduro Test, it’s the classic of this zone we’ll say. We’ll really have three nice special tests. Finally, they really want to make a great show for the Super Test… Nothing difficult, no artificial obstacles but good speed and nice show!”
“Here, it is my country, my town!”
How did you prepare this so particular GP?
J.M: “I trained a lot around here, mainly on my training track that is really close from the Cross Test and so with the same type of terrain. So I’ve done the maximum of laps and training in that countryside…”
What do you think of your two first Grand Prix of the season?
J.M: “I think that the Spain-Portugal tour has been very important to learn the level of the World Championship. It has been few years I couldn’t attend to it because of a miss of luck and also with some problems with my respective teams. In Spain, I fought the two days for the 6th position but some mistakes just allowed me to finish twice 9th. In Portugal, I felt already better and I’ve made some nice times in some special tests as the Xtreme test and I finished 6th and 7th. It’s really satisfying when we take a look at the level of the riders in this Enduro 1 category…”
What’s your situation with Gas Gas?
J.M: “I have a contract with Gas Gas and also with the Italian importer. At now, I don’t really know the situation. I know it is difficult but the firm should be better by the time. But it is clear that we’re all living a tough and difficult situation…”
“In full attack mode…”
How do you feel with the bike?
J.M: “The Gas Gas is very competitive. And I feel that, on the World Championship, people see that the bike is pretty competitive in some special tests. But with all the problems with the firm, it is difficult to work well on the bike…”
Will we see you in Belgium and France?
J.M: “I really hope so! I really hope that Gas Gas will be better and that I will manage to end the season with them!”
What’s your goal this weekend?
J.M: “I don’t want and I don’t like to make a very precise prognostic. But I really hope to make a nice race, give my best and then I’ll take what I can!”
What do you have to say to your “tifosis”?
J.M: “I’m waiting for you, very numerous in each special tests to push hard behind me and help me to be in full attack mode!”