SIXTH AND SEVENTH ROW FOR THE APRILIA RS-GP MACHINES AT THE CIRCUIT OF THE AMERICAS
The latest MotoGP practice sessions on the Austin circuit promise a rather interesting race tomorrow. In fact, there are quite a few riders who will be contending for a position in the points, a compact group that includes Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl's Aprilia RS-GP machines.
The Aprilia Racing Team Gresini standard-bearers will start tomorrow from the sixth (Bradl, 16th) and seventh (Bautista, 19th) row on the grid after also demonstrating a greatly improved race pace. Something is still lacking on the flying lap, a condition that is definitely affected by the inexperience in the saddle of the new Aprilia prototype.
In view of the race, the weather factor is not to be underestimated. Today on the Texan track, the rain, although light, had an impact on a few of the cadet category sessions, whereas the MotoGP FP3, FP4 and qualifying sessions were held on a substantially dry track.
“This morning we did a very important test on the setup, trying to improve, but it didn't provide the results we had hoped for. So in the afternoon we made some less drastic changes in what we felt was the best direction and I tried using the hard rear tyre. All told, it didn't go badly, a lot will depend on the temperature we find for the race tomorrow. We need to improve acceleration, coming out of the corners the bike tends to become unstable and that costs us time. In qualifying I improved my time and I could have done even better, but unfortunately another rider got in the way. In any case, we know that we can improve a lot in the race. We'll see what the weather is like tomorrow and we'll do our best”.
“These were good qualifiers for me. My only disappointment is that I wasn't able to line up my best performance in the various sectors. On my flying lap I also had to overtake a rider and that cost me a few tenths in the straight stretch, but I'm satisfied anyway, especially because in the practice sessions we found some good solutions that give us a good pace even on used tyres. It will be an interesting race. On such a difficult track the RS-GP is performing well, so we are moving in the right direction. We still have a few things to try during the warmup session, especially the hard rear tyre option that we will evaluate”.