"A difficult day, but I felt good. I like this layout and I had fun riding today. The grip is extremely low, especially if we compare it to Misano. Because of this, I did not take too many risks, as it would have been incredibly easy to make a mistake. Unfortunately, I do not have good sensations with the medium tyre but, because of tyre allocation, I was only able to use the soft in the last 10 minutes of FP2. I felt much better with that one, but I was unable to do a good lap, partly because of a yellow flag. Tomorrow morning I’ll try again to qualify for Q2."
ALEIX AND BRADLEY TRYING TO FIND GRIP
The biggest concern for the riders on the first day of practice in Barcelona was, from the start, the difficulty finding the right level of traction. It is a particularly demanding situation in preparing for the race, where the bike/tyres package setup must provide the most consistent performance possible.
In any case, the Aprilia riders managed to improve their pace significantly between the two sessions, with Aleix less than three tenths of a second from the top 10, despite being unable to do a true flying lap. Bradley shaved more than half a second off his time between FP1 and FP2, focusing on pace, as the two long runs he did during the afternoon session demonstrate.
"I think it was a demanding day for everyone, especially in terms of rear grip. It seems rather difficult to get the tyre up to temp here, partly because it is a bit cooler than the usual situation here. It will take a few laps to find the right feeling and I'm curious to see what happens tomorrow since I don’t think it will be possible to aim for a flying lap in FP3 and qualifying, but to increase pace gradually instead. Historically, we stress the tyre less with the RS-GP and this is a disadvantage for us at the moment. We need to analyse the data and try to make improvements where that is concerned”.