15 June 2018
After a promising FP1, full of good indications and concluding just outside the top ten, Aleix Espargaró ran into some unexpected difficulties in the second session, characterised by high heat on the Spanish track. The altered temperature conditions resulted in a situation of poor grip for the number 41 RS-GP and all the various changes to the settings and tyres proved to be in vain. Aleix was one of the very few who did not improve their times from the morning, finishing the day with the 17th best time at 1’40.388. His attack on the high end of the standings will therefore be postponed until tomorrow in FP3 which, as always, will be the decisive session to see who will go straight through to the second qualifying session.
Scott Redding, also hindered by a crash that was harmless for the rider, finished the combined standings in 23rd place with a time of 1’40.815.
“In the morning I felt good, but in the afternoon I found myself with very little grip both at the front and on the rear tyre. I tried all three tyre options on the rear and the two up front, but we did not find a solution that works well. It is a very strange sensation with poor control at the front when I close the throttle. In the morning, I started with a setting similar to the one used at Mugello, but in the afternoon everything changed and I switched to a different setting, so now we need to analyse the data well in order to figure out which direction to go for tomorrow.”
“I turned a lot of laps today without making too many changes and trying several tyre types. I felt rather good with the hard tyres, although we struggle a bit in braking. Overall, the biggest difficulty is speed on the flying lap. There is not much difference between a lap with used and new tyres and that is an aspect that I want to improve. The crash was strange. I was a bit off my line and as soon as I released the brake, I lost the front end.”