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Feb 11, 2012

More From The Moto2/Moto3 Test At Valencia


Valencia, Spain - 11 Feb 2012: Scott Redding got his 2012 season off to a flying start by shattering the outright lap record at Valencia. Marc VDS teammate, Mika Kallio, was also under lap record pace during the three days of testing at Valencia, despite a big crash on the opening day.

After a two-month absence from the track, Redding was quickly up to speed, topping the timesheets on day one with a time more than half a second inside the current lap record. On day two he improved further to post the fastest ever Moto2 lap of the 4km Valencia circuit by a considerable margin.

Of more concern to his championship rivals was the Marc VDS rider's pace during a full race simulation on the final day. Almost every lap was under lap record pace, proving that the switch to Kalex machinery has given Redding the consistency to match his undoubted pace.

With track conditions less than ideal at Valencia, Kallio opted not to push for fast lap times over the three days, but instead to continue his familiarisation with the Kalex Moto2 bike by clocking up as many kilometres as possible. Unfortunately, after just 26 laps, the Marc VDS rider was forced to sit out the rest of the opening day after crashing heavily at turn one.

Kallio was back on track for days two and three, posting times consistently below lap record pace. The Finnish rider is now looking forward to the next test at Jerez, where he's confident he can find the extra pace needed to close the gap on the current Moto2 front-runners.

Scott Redding #45: Best Lap: 1'35.6
"The Kalex has been great from the start. It's good to be able to jump on the bike and be on the pace straightaway and I'm feeling more and more comfortable every time I get on it. Yesterday I was pushing for a fast lap when I dropped into the 1'35s, but today I was on almost the same pace for an entire race simulation. Last year we had real problems with the tyres dropping off just five or six laps into a race. In the race simulations so far with the Kalex the drop off only comes right at the end of the run and is less, so I can maintain the same pace. It's been a good test here at Valencia, but the next test in Jerez can't come soon enough for me now."

Mika Kallio #36: Best Lap 1'36.4
"The weather conditions here at Valencia were a limiting factor, with the cool track temperatures making things difficult. We decided just to get kilometres in on the bike, rather than spending time finding a set-up that worked in these conditions but wouldn't work elsewhere. The crash on day one sort of confirmed that decision for us too. It was a big one and the damage to the bike ruled us out for the rest of the first day. Despite not pushing so hard during the remaining two days my lap times were fairly good, I was able to lap consistently in the mid 1'36 bracket. Now we head for Jerez, which will be an important test for us. With warmer weather and better track conditions we will start to look for the tenths we need to close on the top of the timesheet."

Michael Bartholemy: Team Manager
"Both Marc VDS riders have done a good job here at Valencia, but Scott's speed and consistency over the three days have been particularly impressive. Yesterday he was more than 0.5s inside the outright lap record of Toni Elias, which is more than a second faster than anyone has managed in a Moto2 race here at Valencia. His consistency during the race simulation also showed that he could maintain this pace; unlike some of the riders who managed only a single quick lap today. Mika's confidence took a bit of a knock when he crashed heavily at turn one on the opening day, but I'm pleased to say he bounced back and has been consistently quick the past two days. It all bodes well for the season ahead. After such a successful test I'd like to say a big thank you to our President, Marc van der Straten, for his continuing support and confidence."

More, from a press release issued by JiR Moto2 Team:

Valencia test: a positive first outing for Zarco and Granado

The three day IRTA tests in Valencia have just ended and the JiR Team's riders both recorded positive lap times that are a good precursor for the rest of the winter test schedule. The Frenchman Johann Zarco found good consistency of performance on the MotoBI, while the young Brazilian Eric Granado on his side of the garage has improved his performance lap-after-lap, leaving a good impression from his performances.

Gianluca Montiron

These have been three very intense days, with the low temperatures affecting the performance of machines and also causing some crashes. In terms of outright performance the actual level of the machines cannot be evaluated yet, as all teams ran with their 'own' engines that were fully prepared by them, hence the several mechanical troubles that occurred to some teams during this test.

On our side we haven't brought here extreme technical solutions but we used standard materials and machinery as to us the main thing is to ride as much as possible to get well prepared to the Championship's starting point. This was the first time with the new machines and we will go to Jerez next week (Feb 16th, 17th and 18th) for the second IRTA test where we will define some new details on the chassis. After this, we have already planned a private test by the end of the month in order to give the riders the chance of testing some more miles in race configuration in order to get prepared for the final tests in Jerez on March 19th, 20th and 21st.

Here in Valencia the two riders tested their new machines and the new Ohlins suspension for 2012. We also took some time to find the right position in the saddle for both riders and to learn how to read the telemetric data, very useful to give Johann and Eric further information to learn the new riding style needed by this new class compared to 125, which is the category they both are coming from.

Johann Zarco

After this three day test I tried to find the correct position on the machine and now I feel better on the bike even if I didn't improve too much my best lap time. I'm thinking how to be faster in Jerez and my goal is to acquire the secrets of this new category to be with the top group at the first race. I'm training a lot to understand the four-stoke 600cc machine, especially regarding its weight. I'm preparing myself and hoping to find with the mechanics a good setting of the bike to get a good practice time without taking any risks.

Eric Granado

The three day test went well, today I rode enough and I started to have a good feeling with the bike, so I could begin to make the first adjustments to it. In the two previous days I fell twice: once because of an engine failure of a competitor in front of me and yesterday because the tyre was probably not yet up to temperature. Today I think I have made the first steps in approaching this new category and for the next test I hope to learn from other riders the secrets of how to ride a four-stroke motorcycle.