Marco Melandri: "To be honest today I had hoped to keep up with the group of riders ahead of me, but at the beginning of the race I lost a lot of time, struggling with the lack of stability at the front and poor grip at the rear. It's a shame because I had even gotten off the line well and from the mid-race point on the bike felt like it had been feeling these last few days, letting me lap at a good pace, staying around 1'41.5."
BAUTISTA AND MELANDRI, BOTH AT THE FINISH LINE, CONTINUE TO IMPROVE WITH THEIR RS-GP BIKES AND REDUCE THE GAP BEHIND THE PACK.
Termas de Rio Hondo (Argentina), 19 April 2015 - In the second American race on the Argentinian Termas de Rio Hondo circuit, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini confirmed the progress demonstrated in Austin. The two RS-GP bikes, for the first time both crossing the finish line, significantly reduced the gap behind the leaders and the middle pack.
Some conservative riding in the first part of the race kept the two riders from being able to battle for positions in the points with Bautista finishing 19th ahead of Melandri in 20th, both coming back in the final stages of the race. But the times (just over 4 seconds from 11th place) in the end reward the hard work they and the entire team have done on development.
Romano Albesiano (Aprilia Racing Manager)
"Today's result in terms of times is quite positive. We finished with Alvaro at 4.672 seconds from eleventh place and about 44 seconds from the leader. I would have liked a better final placement but perhaps we were too careful in the first part of the race. But our overall pace, both Alvaro's and Marco's, was very close to that of the riders in the middle pack. An encouraging performance and Marco also confirmed that by now he has come quite close to his team mate's performance."
Fausto Gresini (Team Manager)
"Beyond the final placement, which without a doubt could have been better, we ran a good race, lapping with the group that battles consistently for points. With a faster first part a better final placement was definitely within our reach. But we'll head home having taken a step forward with both riders. Marco has evidently also found some confidence and feeling here. We can be optimistic as we look forward."
Alvaro Bautista: "In the first part of the race I was too calm. I wanted to conserve the tyres, but I actually noticed less wear, probably because the track conditions were better. At the end I tried to push harder even though at that point the group of riders ahead of me had already created a gap that I was unable to close. In any case, we finished another important race, also reducing the gap behind the winner compared to how we did in Texas. No we are already looking forward toward Jerez, the location of the first European race, with the goal of improving further. I want to thank the team which is always working very hard: we take a small step forward every time and we are able to better identify what we need to do to improve."