Interview: Jorge Prado – unbeaten in MXGP so far this season

We might only be four rounds into the 2024 MXGP world championship season but what a year Jorge Prado is having. He has won every round so far in all different kind of conditions.

At Arco di Trento he had questions to answer after a bad qualifying race due to his seat falling off (twice). With a bad gate pick he still got two holeshots but in moto one, Febvre and Gajser passed him and pulled away. In race two, he ended up taking the win for another overall win and turned it around.

We spoke to Prado after round four which you can read/listen/watch below:

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GateDrop: We are four rounds into the MXGP season and four wins for you. That is simply unbelievable and that doesn’t happen too often, you must feel invincible out there…

Prado: Well, it’s is crazy we are already four GP’s in and four wins. I’m just very happy, very confident right now. I’m feeling good with the bike but today I was struggling a lot with the track and I still got the win so even if on a track like this where I was not feeling 100% I can get a win then make makes me even more proud and it makes the win even cooler, you know. so I am super happy.

GateDrop: You’ve been so good this season, you haven’t really had to answer that many questions but this weekend you did with what happened in the qualifying race and what happened in the first moto so you must be buzzing to answer those questions…

Prado: Yeah I mean I think they put me on me challenges. We started on the outside and I had to prove I’m a good starter and I did twice (laughs). I’m very happy and I put so much effort. I’m happy also for the team that we can, you know, finish the weekend on top after Saturday.

GateDrop: What changed between motos because in the first moto, you have to say Romain was on it, passed you and pull away… Gajser passed you as well but it was still quite close between you two right until a few back markers got in the way but in the second moto it looked like you were a lot more comfortable. Did you change anything?

Prado: Yeah, I mean in the second moto, I was more comfortable with the bike changes we did on suspension. It felt better and in the first moto I actually didn’t feel 100% with the track and with the bike. They pulled away but like before the last laps, I was getting closer to Romain and so I was actually on the last laps of the moto getting better and better. But yeah, then with the lappers, I just lost so much time but I knew it was possible to regroup and close the gap because they were not that that much faster to gain let’s say a second lap, you know. I mean I finished moto, I was like I don’t feel 100% but it wasn’t too bad and with little bike adjustments I can maybe feel just safer and that’s what actually it felt like in that second moto.  I just felt safer not maybe not much better riding but I could ride in a safer way.

GateDrop: Watching you in that second moto, you were doing a few things that other riders weren’t doing… Just before the last corner before the finish jump, you were landing on that bump… Unbelievable to watch and Stefan Everts would be proud but even to have the thought process to know to do that, never mind execute it at the highest level of racing is unbelievable…

Prado: (laughs) It was cool, I was just like doing a pre like to jump the whole section and it was fun. I don’t think I was gaining any time but it was just cool to do and  that’s why I was doing it. I mean I think if I did it or didn’t do it that it was a big difference but it was more for fun than for other things, you know?

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GateDrop: Just on Arco di Trento,  it’s actually my first time here, I don’t think the TV gives it justice. It is so unique and it’s hard to ride, you’ve really rock hard sections and then with some sand they brought in, I mean setting up a bike must be a nightmare.  What’s it like to ride and even though on paper that might not suit your skillset, you still always seem to do well here…

Prado: This year, you know, we didn’t have any rain. Normally it always rains one of the days and the track gets a bit softer and you have different kind of berms. This weekend I feel like yesterday was a bit better but today somehow the preparation was quite weird and it was so hard in places. There weren’t many options to pass to be honest but I didn’t have to pass a lot because I was starting always good but like no choices, you had to go that line and that’s it. It was quite sketchy but yeah, it was a weird track this year. But it’s a little bit like because the ground over here is super super hard and I don’t think on the TV you can you can even see how hard it is and how slippery it is. You feel like you’re losing the front every single corner so it’s tough to ride.

GateDrop: Obviously you never really had an off season to rest because you were racing, racing, racing and you’re still racing… Have you thought about burnout – Are you factoring in recovery or are you still working really really hard?

Prado:  I will get even better and that’s my plan for the season.

GateDrop:  We have two soft ones in the next two GP’s in Portugal and a home GP in Spain again at Lugo. You must be looking forward to those two tracks?

Prado: Yeah, they’re tracks that I like. Portugal is a very cool track I also won there a couple of times and then the GP in Spain at my home City. So, it will be cool.

GateDrop: Just on Spain it was an amazing atmosphere at Madrid and there is talk the final round might also be in Spain, is that something you’ve heard of and who knows it might be your last GP so what a send off that could be at the last round…

Prado: I don’t know, I mean if the title needs to be decided in Spain that would be cool but hopefully we can maybe make it happen before like last year but anyway the most important thing is to take the title whether it’s on the last race and if in the last race we get a race in Spain it will be crazy.

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GateDrop:  For next year, you’re not going to tell me what you’re going to do but have you made the decision yet…

Prado:  I still don’t know for next year because we are really focused on MXGP. That’s my goal right now, to keep winning and keep doing good races.

Interview: Andy McKinstry

Image: MXGP/Infront Moto Racing