"In FP1 I felt very good. I was one of the few who did not change tyres for the entire session, still managing to maintain a good pace. During FP2, something in the traction control settings wasn't working. I even risked crashing and that compromised the session. We still need to analyse the problem well, but we will most likely make some changes to the electronics, whereas in terms of setup, I am rather happy with the RS-GP on this track. The new asphalt is much better. There is more grip practically everywhere."
AFTER A GOOD FP1, ESPARGARÓ AND REDDING FIND THEMSELVES GRAPPLING WITH GRIP PROBLEMS IN THE SECOND FREE PRACTICE SESSION
The first free practice session on Friday for the GP of Spain in Jerez smiled on the Aprilia machines which placed in the top ten with Scott Redding (tenth time at 1'39.585) and just outside the top ten with Aleix Espargaró, thirteenth with a time of 1’39.899 after an entire session ridden on medium tyres. Things went differently in the afternoon FP2 session, where both of the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini riders had to reckon with a lack of grip and traction problems. This situation kept them way out of the top ten, and therefore the spots that would have sent them straight through to Q2 tomorrow. Scott finished in fifteenth place in the combined rankings, whereas Aleix slid down to nineteenth place, both among the few who did not improve after the first session.
This postpones the assault on the top positions until Saturday - spots that seemed to be within reach for the RS-GP at the start of the weekend.
"This morning we started well, but unfortunately in FP2 we had some small problems with the bike that kept us from improving as we would have liked. We are lacking some information on the various available tyres because we didn't use the full session. I was one of the few who felt good straight away with the soft front tyre and that's strange. Tomorrow we will need to work on this aspect to confirm the information we collected today."