Official Moto2 Testing Commences at Valencia
Circuito de la Comunitat Valenciana, 11th February 2014
Circuit Length: 4.005km
Bike # 5 – Johann Zarco P11 – 66 laps, best time – 1:37.155
Bike # 2 – Josh Herrin P23 – 59 laps, best time – 1:38.351
Weather: air temperature 5°C (Dry) / track temperature 9°C max
Day one of the first official Moto2 test started today at a chilly Valencia Circuit.
Low track temperatures prevented most riders heading out as the pitlane opened for the morning session but Josh Herrin was one of the first to venture around the 2.5 mile circuit and test the conditions.
Having suffered with sickness throughout the shakedown test in Almeria, the young American was keen to climb back on board his #2 bike and work hard to make up for lost time.
Meanwhile Johann Zarco continued to try different settings on the #5 Caterham Suter but was hampered by a small crash in the first of the afternoon sessions due to a lack of grip. Escaping unhurt the Frenchman was able to remount and head back to the pits.
Johann Zarco: “Today was very difficult with the weather. I had a little crash even though I was being careful. The problem is when it is so cold, just making the slightest change to your riding style can cause this to happen.
“I am disappointed because in the Moto2 session it was possible to do a good lap time and be up at the front but today I was unable to do so.
“Tomorrow I am looking to continue building my confidence and improve, as I know I can run with the top riders.”
Josh Herrin: “Today my strategy was to do as many laps as possible so I could learn the track on a new bike and build my confidence.
“Hopefully tomorrow the weather will be a little warmer because today I was taking it very easy as I didn’t want to crash.
“For day two of testing here at Valencia, I hope to improve my lap times and continue to get more comfortable on the bike.
“I’d like to thank my team for all their hard work today. I am very happy with our result.”
Johan Stigefelt – Team Manager: “It was very cold here today so it’s been hard for everybody and so the lap times that we’ve seen haven’t been very good. It’s difficult to predict anything out of this first day. We just focussed on getting some laps in and working with the settings we had for these conditions.
“For Zarco we did a couple of small changes and he was very happy with the bike. Unfortunately he had a small crash into turn four, the first right into there with a cold tyre. It was a bit unexpected but prior to that he did a good lap time, taking into account the conditions today.
“The forecast for tomorrow is much better so we will see how things go as it could be a completely different story here when we have 25-30 °C track temperatures.
“For Josh it was all about learning the track. He had been here before but it was a long time ago and it’s all new on this bike. He started well, riding many laps and managed to put in a low 1:38 which is very good. That was actually the target for today riding in these conditions so he’s less than two seconds off the pace which means I’m pleased.
“I’m happy with what both riders and the team have achieved today. Now we will sit down and debrief so we can plan for tomorrow and make a big step forward.”