6 April 2018
Despite the uncertain weather, with a bit of rain and difficult conditions to interpret, both Aleix Espargaró and Scott Redding improved significantly between the first qualifying session in the morning and the afternoon session, an undertaking that not all the riders in the MotoGP paddock managed as they prepared for the Argentinian race on Sunday. In the end, both just barely missed the top ten. Aleix finished twelfth (in 1’40.800) just 85 thousandths of a second behind the tenth best time and just ahead of Scott, thirteenth with a time of 1’40.839.
For the Aprilia riders, it was a day of hard work, complicated by the track conditions – rather dirty in the morning – and the uncertain weather in FP2. As always in the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini garage, efforts were focused both on the flying lap and on race pace. Aleix, pleased with the progress made in terms of electronics and power distribution, is keen to improve the chassis architecture. Redding also did some comparative resting with the settings used for the first race in Qatar.
“We still need to find the right balance to be fast on this track. In the afternoon we improved the feeling quite a bit in terms of the electronics and power management. Now we need to work on the chassis architecture. As far as the gaps, we are not far off, but thinking about the 25 race laps, we clearly need to improve. I need more feeling especially in the transition between braking and acceleration, where I lose grip. Today was a complicated day for us and sure, the asphalt was not in perfect conditions, but we need to know how to adapt to the different conditions.”
“Today we tried the bike that hadn’t given me the right feeling in the Qatar race and that was confirmed again here. So, we know where to work, because with the other RS-GP I felt rather good with the same, good sensations I had in the tests. Unfortunately, I struggled with a backache today, especially this morning when I almost couldn’t get off the bike. Thanks to the treatments, in FP2 I felt a lot better. I was able to concentrate on riding and overall I am satisfied with the day.”