Jorge Lorenzo says he does not see himself as favorite for the MotoGP title despite having taken the lead after his win at Jerez.
The Yamaha rider has enjoyed a very strong start to the season, having finished second in Qatar and first in his home race. He is currently leading the championship from teammate Valentino Rossi, four points behind the Spaniard. But Lorenzo insists it is still too early to consider himself as a top contender for the title.
"Despite our victory in Jerez and taking the lead in the world standings I continue to think that I am not the favorite because the season is very long and it has only just started," said Lorenzo in a team preview ahead of the French Grand Prix. I am very proud, however, because Jerez was my first victory at home in MotoGP.
"Last year I won in Le Mans in an amazing and crazy race. It was very complicated because of the rain and drying track, but I think that everybody in our team did an unbelievable job, above all on Sunday. I know that I used everything I had, from the very first laps right to the end. I hope the fans aren't waiting for a repeat this weekend!
"Of course, the weather is always a risk in Le Mans, but I hope for sun. I've been on the podium twice there, last season and when I won my second 250cc title, so I am looking forward to trying again. I've had almost three weeks since Jerez and I know that I am ready for this second European race."
Rossi, who raced with an injured shoulder in the previous race, says he is hopeful he will be fully fit for this weekend's race.
"My shoulder is more or less recovered now so I hope I will be back to full strength in Le Mans," he said."Despite the disaster of last year's race, Le Mans is a good track for me and the Yamaha always goes well there. The biggest problem is the weather, but after last year I think we deserve a sunny French GP!
"We've made a good start to the season, with the win in Qatar and then another podium, but we have also struggled with the bike in some areas and so we need to try to improve our performance. We had a good test after Jerez so I hope that we will be able to use that information to start strongly here."