"I am having a lot of fun riding the bike and that is a positive aspect. I think that the new asphalt is helping. We have not had any problems caused by vibrations. The layout, with not too many spots where we need to accelerate from low speed, also suits the RS-GP well. I am pleased with this Saturday, but the top-ranking riders were really fast. It will not be easy to stay in the group during the race, but that is my goal."
CHATTERING LIMITS ANDREA, ON THE SIXTH ROW
The first good news for team Aprilia came at the end of FP3, where Aleix Espargaró was sent straight through to the Q2 session. The Spanish rider therefore took advantage of FP4 to work on race strategy, trying various tyre options and assessing the ideal setup. Aleix finished qualifying with a time of 1'59.620, which puts him in twelfth place.
Andrea struggled in today’s sessions with some nasty chattering which limited his efforts in finding the best performance. His time of 2'00.240 places him in the second spot of the sixth row on the grid. In anticipation of the race, Andrea and his team will analyse their options to attenuate the problem with vibrations and increase the feeling.
"In terms of tyre selection and race configuration, we have rather clear ideas. Unfortunately, we still have the chattering problem which really limited me. We’ll see if the guys are able to find some solution that will allow me to gain confidence and close the gap, even compared to Aleix. It will not be simple, but we’ll hang in there and try to improve constantly."