"Despite a less-than-perfect feeling, I finished a good lap toward the end of FP2 that put us in the top ten. Our biggest difficulty right now is acceleration. We don’t have much rear grip and on a stop-and-go track like this one we are forced to make it all up in braking. Doing that is risky, because it is easy to make mistakes when braking late, which is what happened in the second session. We took a step forward after FP1, but we still need to improve further in this area."
ANDREA GRITS HIS TEETH AND IS BACK IN THE SADDLE AFTER THE JEREZ INJURY BUT HIS WORK ON DEVELOPMENT IS HINDERED BY HIS FOOT
It was a good day of practice in France for Aleix Espargaró who finished the first two practice sessions in eighth place. The time of 1’32.132 places him solidly in the top ten, despite a crash a few minutes from the end of FP2 that kept him from improving even further. In any case, there was a clear step forward compared to the morning that places him among the best while everyone waits to see if the weather, always cantankerous in North-eastern France, will let the riders improve on their times in the Saturday morning session.
Andrea Iannone tackled his first day of practice with the unpleasant company of pain in his left foot due to the accident which forced him to miss the last GP in Jerez. Andrea, also busy dialling in his RS-GP, improved his times by almost one second between the first and second session, finishing 19th at 1’33.141. It seems that he and his team are moving in the right direction, especially in the braking phase, and they will continue working in this direction tomorrow for the qualifiers.
"I'm still not at 100% with the ankle. I am suffering a bit in braking because of the pain, but that is not what is limiting us the most. We are working on trying to stop the bike better. Braking is where we struggle the most and that then compromises the other riding phases, like coming out of corners and acceleration. We made a good improvement compared to the morning and we’ll keep working in this direction. So, I’ll grit my teeth and continue giving it my all."