Felice Monteleone – FMPhotoSport Moto3 News
ASPAR Team MotoGP, LOSAIL Official Test
Final test of preseason fires up in Losail for the ASPAR Team
ASPAR Team riders continue to build data as they aim for competitive start to the season
After preseason visits to Malaysia and Australia the MotoGP World Championship teams and riders are in Qatar now for a three-day test that will complete preparations for the campaign ahead. Like the Grand Prix here in two weeks’ time the sessions are running under floodlights, with the track open this evening from 4pm until 11pm. As usual the dirty track surface here saw a slow and steady start to the action although the lap times soon started to drop, with Jorge Lorenzo setting tonight’s pace with a best effort of 1’55.452.
The test represents an important opportunity for the ASPAR Team to continue to gather data with Ducati, building on and comparing with the information stored at the recent test in Australia. The goal for Yonny Hernández and Eugene Laverty is to continue working towards the first race of the season, with the Colombian’s first target to solve the electronics issues encountered in Australia. Progress made tonight allowed him to lap just 1.5 seconds off Lorenzo’s best, finishing fourteenth overall on the timesheets. Laverty is a few places further back as he continues to adapt to the new bike and tyres, having lost valuable time during preseason through injury.
14th Yonny Hernández 1.57.021 (40 laps): “I am happy because we have fixed the electronic problem we had in Australia. We have started out in the right way here in Losail. The new tyres they have brought to this test are quite different to what we were using before, especially the front. I am happy because we have found the direction we want to work in and we can start pushing now, climbing the upward curve. The lap times are right, we are not far off the top and hopefully tomorrow we can improve our lap time again and find a better set-up for the race here.”
20th Eugene Laverty 1.58.269 (34 laps): “Today the most important thing was to get comfortable on the bike. Like I said at the last test it still didn’t feel like my bike so today we have changed the position a little bit and I feel much more comfortable. Just small things like adjusting the footpeg position allows me to move more easily around the bike, do more laps and towards the end of evening I was able to start pushing a bit more. Now we know what we need to change to go faster, because that will be the aim tomorrow.”