Suzuki 2021 Winter Magazine

TEAM SUZUKI RACING NEWS 7 2021 Winter Issue Team SUZUKI ECSTAR MotoGP Shinichi Sahara had a demanding role in 2021 outdoors in nature – I can’t wait to go snowboarding and skiing. And of course, I’ll spend more time with little Lucas too – he’s growing fast! I’m happy to close this season with some nice memories, such as the podium in Silverstone, and it’s been great at the last few races to see lots more fans back at the circuits. Valencia was amazing, the paddock was so full, almost like old times. But there are two sides to it because when you want to get from your motorhome to the box and you’re on a scooter it can be tricky to move… but it’s also really nice when people want to have a photo with you, or your autograph. I’m happy to meet my supporters, and I get a real boost when I see them in the grandstands cheering for me, especially after I’ve passed the chequered flag and I can wave to them. Let’s hope in 2022 we can continue to get back to normality and enjoy more races all together. Personally speaking, I have a goal for next year, but I can’t tell you because if I tell you …. well, let’s just say that I’m very superstitious! I will keep it as a secret for now.” SHINICHI SAHARA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR’s Team Director and Project Leader Shinichi Sahara talks the highs and lows of taking on a last-minute job role, and everything it taught him. “We’re at the end of a long and demanding season and I would say that, despite not getting quite the results we were hoping for, the year was around 60 to 70 per cent of what I expected. 2021 was different for all of us, coming off the back of winning the title, and the team manager leaving. We all had to step up and find the way forward. I had previously been the Team Director, mainly managing things from the factory in Japan, but in 2021 I took on a new role as Team Manager and Project Leader. This workload, coupled with still being the Group Leader in the development department in Japan, was way too much. But