Interview: Gianluca Facchetti on a tough 2019 and joining the Hutten Metaal Yamaha team

There’s no doubt that Gianluca Facchetti has bags of talent but he hasn’t had things easy. A few years ago, Facchetti was involved in a dangerous car crash but was able to bounce back from that and be at the front in the EMX125 class. However, last year was his second year in the EMX250 class and it just didn’t go to plan which was a shame for the Italian.

For 2020, Facchetti stays with Yamaha but has joined up with the Hutten Metaal Yamaha team who are now the official Yamaha EMX250 team, at the first race in Ottobiano, Facchetti was very impressive. The Italian will be hoping this year he can ride at the front in the EMX250 class and put a tough 2019 well and truly behind him.

Facchetti has also moved away from home and to the Netherlands to be closer to his new team so it’s all change for him.

We caught up with him to discuss a tough 2019, the new team and more.

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Gatedrop: The 2019 season was tough for you, just what went on? Where you riding with injuries and mentally how tough was the season for you?

Facchetti:  2019 was really tough. I had an injury in November so I was out several months and after when I was back I felt every day tired.  The accident a few years ago changed my body and I was unable to do what I wanted, when you ride without strength you always risk to get injured. I had a few injuries that cost me all season.  After the last crash in Uddevalla I stopped riding to find a solution. It was really difficult mentally, I thought I couldn’t do it anymore.

Gatedrop: Antonio Cairoli is a close friend of yours, what advice was he giving you last season when things weren’t going well and is it good to have him in your corner?

Facchetti: Tony is a really special guy for me I learned a lot from him and he helped me a lot mentally. We had a tough year but he told me to never give up.

Gatedrop: Yamaha have given you another season with the Hutten Metaal team. You must be grateful to Yamaha for giving you another year?

Facchetti: It was a really good opportunity and I’m really grateful but they were aware of my condition and my problems so during the year they’ve help me a lot.

Gatedrop: How has everything been going with the Hutten Metaal Yamaha team so far?

Facchetti: I came in Holland early in November to see the team and meet all the people, my first impression was incredible. The factory is amazing, they are all really pumped and ready to help me to make another step.

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Gatedrop: Thibault Benistant is your team mate and he also had a good weekend at Ottobiano. Has it been good to put in the laps with him this winter? The speed must be high which can only help..

Facchetti: Yes, it’s nice to have Thibault with me every day, we improve day by day and we train every time together. He’s a nice guy and we also live together so it will be a nice season.

Gatedrop: I’d say you’re more of a hard pack guy, so to be that fast at Ottobiano, you must be pleased about that?

Facchetti: I come from Italy so we train always on hard pack but now I live in Holland so.. rain, cold and sand is the routine now. I love learning every day, I have such a lovely and a good trainer (Herjan Brakke) that has helped me a lot, he is the key for me, we had a good winter training in Spain and Holland.

Gatedrop: Would you say this is a make or break season for your career?

Facchetti: I think this will be a important season for me but we know that the EMX250 class is really competitive so the most important thing is to have fun and stay healthy all season.

Gatedrop: What’s your expectations for the EMX250 series this year?

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Facchetti: I have no expectations now we will see race after race.

Gatedrop: Will you race any MX2 World Championship races that don’t collide with EMX250?

Facchetti: Yes, I will. Maybe 2 or 3 rounds, let’s see how the first rounds of the EMX250 rounds go for me.

Gatedrop: Anyone to thank/anything else to add..

Facchetti: I want to thank all my family for the BIG support and all my team, they are amazing so let’s have fun and enjoy riding my Hutten Metaal Yamaha!

Interview: Andy McKinstry

Pics: Alex Piantanida