The coronavirus halt to the Moto3 World championship means Albert Arenas' title lead has gone uncontested since his victory at the Qatar season-opener on March 8.

By the time the season (hopefully) restarts, with Friday practice at Jerez on July 17, the Moto3 (and Moto2) riders will have waited 131 days.

Many, like Arenas, have spent much of the time to date under lockdown conditions in Europe. But with conditions now improving, most will be able to train on two-wheels by the end of the month.

"Being so long without races is especially difficult due to the absence of adrenaline," said the Aspar rider. "Being confined at home, sometimes I would go up the wall, I suppose, like everyone, since we were all in the same situation.

"I have tried to keep as active as possible, but we have been competing for many years and I hope I have not forgotten how to get my knee down!"

Arenas admits he can't remember the last time he spent more than two months off a bike.

"I do remember last year being 50 days without getting on the bike due to the spleen injury that I had at the beginning of the season," he said. "In this period, we have tried to work watching previous races and riding a stationary bicycle, which, although it has nothing to do with riding a motorcycle, is helping me to prepare the return to competition very well."

An appearance in the Virtual Moto3 Grand Prix of Spain, where Arenas finished second to Gabriel Rodrigo, also helped quench his competitive thirst.

"The truth is that it was a very nice thing to compete in the virtual grand prix and to feel that competitive edge again after so long," he admitted. "In the video game you do not have everything as controlled as in reality, you are more nervous about it, because you do not completely control how it works, when and how to push harder... it was a different kind of nerves, not wanting to fail, but the competitiveness between the riders was the same."

But soon the Spaniard will be able to return to a real motorcycle.

"Now it's time to start organising the first motorcycle training. I really want to do it, but I want to do it well and make it something that works for me, not a risky training session just to get rid of the bike withdrawal symptoms," Arenas explained. "I don't want to rush, there are still almost two months to go back to the competition and I want it to be as productive as possible."

Arenas also can't help thinking what might have been had the virus not halted his victory momentum.

"It is a victory that I will always remember," he said of Qatar. "We celebrated it, the sensations were incredible, but we were already thinking about the next race. In a normal situation, we would have had to fly to Thailand, where I won in 2019, and where we would have arrived with a lot of energy, after the victory in Qatar, but also after the preseason that we had done. Now I just try to live in the moment.

"You can’t think much about a strategy right now because it will be like another season, although it is true that I will start it with 25 more points," he said of the restart. "I'm not going to think about that, but about picking up the pace and the sensations, in working the best we can, to enjoy the sensations that we had in Qatar."

 

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