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Aug 26, 2013

More From The MotoGP World Championship Event At Brno

FIM Moto2 World Championship: Mika Kallio (36) leads the race at Brno.
Brno, Czech Republic: Mika Kallio stood on the top step of the Moto2 podium for the first time at Brno, after taking a hard fought win in today's Czech Republic Grand Prix. Scott Redding rode to a creditable eighth place, limiting his losses in battle for the championship, after struggling with set-up issues all weekend.

Fast in every session this weekend at Brno, Kallio was involved in a race long battle at the front with Tom Lüthi, Nico Terol and Takaaki Nakagami. The race leader changed on almost every lap but, with just two laps to go, Kallio forced his way to the front. The 30-year-old Finn then posted his fastest lap of the race to pull away from his pursuers, taking the chequered flag and the race win by 0.5s from Nakagami.

Kallio has been on the podium twice already this season, at Austin and Le Mans, but today's race win is his first in five years, his last victory coming in the British 250cc Grand Prix at Donington Park back in 2008.

The set-up issues that have hampered Redding all weekend caused the 20-year-old Briton further problems in today's 20-lap Moto2 race. Initially the bike worked well following changes to the set-up made after warm up. Redding was running as high as fifth, and battling with Pol Espargaro, before the chatter returned as the tyres went off at half race distance.

Redding still looked set for a top six finish, until Johann Zarco hit him from behind, forcing them both off track. The off track excursion meant that both riders lost contact with the group ahead, with Redding eventually finishing eighth, after holding off a challenge from Simone Corsi late in the race.
With Espargaro finishing fourth at Brno today, Redding's advantage at the top of the Moto2 Championship standings was reduced by five points to 21.

Mika Kallio #36: First
"My last win was five years ago at Donington, so this has been a long time coming. It's hard to explain how it feels to win again. Even if I don't show it on the outside, on the inside it was a great feeling, especially on the last lap when I knew I could win. It was a hard race, but I knew if I could get to the front and then make no mistakes in the last two laps then the win was on, so that's what I did. Exiting the last corner I could see the chequered flag and I thought; 'I've done it'. It was such a great feeling. The team has worked hard all season, everything came together for us this weekend and the race went exactly to plan. It doesn't get much better than that."

Scott Redding #45: Eighth
"After struggling with set-up even into warm up, we made some changes ahead of the race that improved things slightly. It was enough to allow me to catch Espargaro, eventually passing him for fifth, but then the problems started. As the tyres went off and the fuel load reduced the chatter returned and it started to get difficult. I still think sixth was a possibility, but then Zarco slammed into my knee and forced us both off track, which meant we lost contact with the group ahead. I managed to hold on to eighth, which means I lost a little of my advantage over Espargaro in the championship, but I'm happy enough that I limited the loss to just five points. Now we go to Silverstone, my home race, to see what we can do there in front of the British fans."

Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
"From the first practice session on Friday, we knew Mika could win here in Brno this weekend. After qualifying and warm up we were even more convinced and, this afternoon, he proved us right. It was a great ride by Mika and not an easy race to win. Nakagami, Lüthi and Terol pushed him hard, but he stuck to the plan, played to his strengths and took his first Moto2 win. Now he's won once, I'm confident we'll see him winning again before the season is done. To have two riders in the team that can win races has always been our goal, and with Mika we've achieved that today. Scott has struggled to find a good set-up on the bike all weekend, but he never gave up. He raced on settings we hadn't tried previously, which made a small improvement, but it was down to him alone that he limited his championship losses to just five points today. A good job in difficult circumstances."

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

West battles front end problems – Sucipto learns and improves at Brno

QMMF Racing Team rider Anthony West battled front end problems with his Speed Up bike during the first day of practice for the Czech Grand Prix. But even though the 32-year-old Australian was close to crashing on numerous occasions, he still only lost eight tenths of a second to Spaniard Pol Espargaró on top of the provisional classification. For qualifying practice on Saturday, West hopes to find the right set-up that gives him a better feel for the limit, a chance to improve on his 20th position and to conquer a starting position within the front runners of the hard-fought Moto2 category.
Young team-mate Rafid Topan Sucipto faced another new challenge with the magnificent Brno circuit. With its fast corners, its unique up- and downhill section and its sheer length of 5.4 kilometres, Brno is an especially difficult track to learn, but the Indonesian teenager found the best line quickly and managed to improve by more than a second from the first to the second session.

Anthony West – 20th in 2.04,094

“We started well this morning, but then I had a problem with Pasini stopping in the middle of the corner. I had to break to avoid him and ended up crashing. This afternoon, I had a problem with the front end of the bike. Whenever I would try to turn and to keep speed in the middle of the corner, I would lose the front. In the last part of the session, I nearly crashed about five times just trying to turn the bike like everybody else. At the moment it is really difficult to ride. The gap to first position is just 0.8 seconds, but I am down in 20th place due to my problem with the front end. I hope we can fix it and be higher up tomorrow!”

Rafid Topan Sucipto – 34th in 2.07,637

“Brno is very exciting with its fast and flowing corners, but it is also very difficult to find the best line. I tried to follow other riders with more experience on this track in order to learn the racing line and the braking points. Step by step, I started to find my rhythm and to improve my lap time. Tomorrow, I want to be faster again!”

More, from a press release issued by Team ItalTrans/AGP Racing:

Grand Prix of Czech Republic
Brno, August 25th, 2013

It could be better, but not that much – pole position on Saturday, second place on race on Sunday, just half a second behind the winner, Takaaki Nakagami presented his team with one of the brightest week-end of the season so far. Springing up from place one at the green light, he has been able to maintain the leadership for a few laps. Than, had to leave it to opponents, moving progressively back to fourth. That was lap number seven but, precisely from that moment, the Japanese rider started his recovery – fourth, than third in the six people leading group. A few more laps, and he has been able to overcome the defensive maneuver of the rider in front, and settled himself second. At that point, he had two targets: first, attack the leader and, second, prevent the riders behind to steal his place. Job done, at the end – second place on podium, for him. That's the third of the season, and the second in a row. The first one dates back to the opening race, in Qatar.

Julian Simon has been really unlucky. Starting from center grid, he went on the outside, and made up a few places just to be hit in the rear by a rider, and sent straight into the gravel trap. There he crashed, put up the bike again and went back on track but, so far away from the last one, and with a bike that showed a few problems, he decided it was wiser to return to garage.

Takaaki Nakagami (41'12”375 – 2nd ) “From the previous days, and especially in qualifying, the feeling with the bike was excellent. We entered the warm-up with the same set-up but – perhaps because of the different weather condition, the feeling was not equally good. Good again on race, where the situation was difficult to handle, with all the guys on top doing the same lap time. I tried to open a gap, but I could not, and when I realized that a big group was just nose to tail with me, I changed strategy, let myself slip back a few places, and tried to save my tires for the last laps. Keeping the pace with those in front had not been easy, because of a strong chattering at the front. In the last laps, I played my cards again, got the second place and went for the first. A couple of time risked a crash – so decided that a valuable second place was not to be wasted, to reward us for the work done, in a period in which we are strong. We know that a victory shall come”.

Claudio Macciotta (Nakagami race engineer) “Very good. There is still something missing, and we'll try to add it. All together, we had decided that the best option was to manage the race – of course, in case he had the chance to open a gap, no opposition from the garage... but the most important point was to keep concentrated. And Takaaki did it – he gave it a try, at the very beginning, risking a bit, than understood that it was not worthwhile, and managed race and bike. He wanted a race like this, with no pressure, to express himself at his best. He's focused and know what he wants from himself and from the machine. And as far as the latter is concerned, we try to give him what he desires. We are very close to it”.

Julian Simon (rit): “At the start, I tried to push to overtake. I went on the outside, but at the first corner someone hit me. A difficult moment of a difficult week-end: we were not too far, but it was not to be our time”.

Pierluigi Aldrovandi (Simon race engineer): “A difficult day, since the morning, when Julian entered the warm-up too much dead set on it, and crashed. As for the race, our plan was to be part of a fast group, but Julian has been hit from behind, fall down, at that was the end: 40 seconds behind the last one, and with the bike in bad condition, go back to garage was the best he could do”.

Luigi Pansera (Team Manager) “We are progressing race by race, and hope to be soon able to get a victory. We deserve it, and would help Takaaki to get his hand on what he mostly want: a MotoGP call. Success is not far away, I would say: he had a problem with the front, and data say that the rear was sliding a bit, but great performance. Every GP can be the right one, we believe”.

More, from a press release issued by Avintia Blusens MotoGP Team:

Hiroshi Aoyama, fourteenth, scores after a good race again
A fall on the second lap leaves Barberá out of the GP

Brno. Heads and tails for the Avintia Blusens MotoGP riders at the GP of Brno. Héctor Barberá, who yesterday told us the good feeling he had for today’s race, was not able to finish it due to a fall on the second lap when he was trying to overtake a group that was holding back his progression to the CRT top positions. It was a pity because today Héctor was convinced of being able to face up to his most direct rivals to finish in top positions.

His teammate Hiroshi Aoyama was luckier. Although he started so far back because of a fall in Saturday’s qualifying session, he was able to finish in fourteenth place scoring twice in a row.

Aoyama lost time fighting hard with other riders that prevented him from being in higher spots at the end of the race. Once the group was overtaken, Hiroshi was able to ride at his own pace passing De Puniet and his official Aprilia bike on the last lap to score two points and be fifth among the CRTs. It was certainly another good race of the Japanese rider who, after his injuries, is riding at a good level again.

In five days’ time, the Avintia Blusens team will be at Silverstone for racing the Great Britain GP.

8 Héctor Barberá: (NC): We started so far back and on the first lap I was with a group in which normally I am not with. I wanted to overtake them as soon as possible because Espargaró was going and, today here, I felt very strong and I was able to compete for the victory. When I was about to pass the group ahead of me, Corti and Petrucci have overtaken between them and I think that they have braked earlier than usual, due to the own fight and, when I have braked, I have not been able to avoid Corti. I have tried not to hit him by lifting the bike just before, but I have not succeeded. It is a pity because I felt very strong. In acceleration we suffer a little bit and passing while braking is always risky. I do not know, perhaps our appetite has played a dirty trick on us but fortunately the next week there is another GP to do it well again. Tomorrow I am going to have a check-up, because the neck bothers me a little bit, but surely I will be at my best at Silverstone.

7 Hiroshi Aoyama: (14th, +1.13.500): It has not been an easy race because due to yesterday’s fall I started so far back, but little by little I have moved up positions until I have run into a group of three riders I have been with much of the race. Although I had better pace than them it has been very difficult to overtake them and even the first time that I have passed them, I have not been able to escape and they have overtaken me again. Finally I have managed to pass them and, riding at my pace, I have progressed until I have caught De Puniet and his Aprilia bike and I have practically passed them on the last lap. I am happy because I have achieved the best position of this year and because I have scored again. I want to thank my team for the work done and for not giving up on giving me a bike I am comfortable riding. The next week I hope we continue on the same line at Silverstone.

More, from a press release issued by Cardion AB Motoracing:

Abraham finishes home race on nineteenth position

Despite strong pain Karel Abraham has finished home race. The Czech rider was fighting with Bryan Staring and he defended his position in front of him. Second Czech rider in premier class, Lukáš Pešek crashed out in second lap.

Karel Abraham
„The aim for today was to finish the race. From this point of view it was not bad today however nineteenth position is not a result we can be happy about. This morning I tried to ride without anesthetics in the warm up to raise efficiency of them during the race. After the start I got in front of Lukáš but in the third corner Aoyama took me little bit out side and Lukáš overtook me. In Schwantz corner Bauer hit me and I don’t even understand how is possible that I managed it. However it was quit bad because it slowed me down a lot and so my body absolved another collision and my shoulder has started to hurt more. Essentially I ride the race with Staring and since a second half of the race I was thinking about the retirement because of the pain. When remained only eight laps to go I have decided to try to finish the race. We will see what bring next week. For now we are considering to skip the race and come back in good shape in Misano.“

Marco Grana, chief mechanic of team Cardion AB Motoracing
„We finished the race and that is the maximum we could want considering Karel’s health condition after Indianapolis. Karel deserves a compliment because he gave everything to the race even he had nothing to lose he finished it. The bike worked well. Of course the nineteenth position is not our position but in this moment it was the maximum that we could reach. I think that Karel should skip one race and use tree weeks of break to get in better shape. It does not mean hundred percent but I believe he could be eighty percent OK.“

More, from a press release issued by NGM Mobile Forward Racing:

Edwards second best CRT at Brno

The Brno GP weekend comes to and end for the NGM Mobile Forward Racing riders Colin Edwards and Claudio Corti

After the fantastic results obtained during yesterday’s qualifying session at Brno, the Texan rider has taken full advantage of his starting grid position by performing a very good beginning of the race and staying with Espargaro, fighting for top CRT. The gap with the Spaniard has been of a second and for the third race in a row, Edwards´s FTR – Kawasaki has been the second best CRT.

Teammate Claudio Corti was less fortunate today. After a promising beginning of the race, during the second lap of the race he was crashed into by Barbera. In order to exclude any possible damage after the concussion, the Italian rider was taken from the circuit’s clinic to the local Brno hospital to conduct further checks. The TAC done at the hospital allowed the doctors to exclude any further damage. Corti will remain at the hospital overnight under observation and will be flying back to Italy tomorrow.

The consistent results show the development that the team has been doing with the FTR – Kawasaki bike. Both riders have a good feeling with their bike sand look forward to the next race that will take place at Silverstone next week.

Colin Edwards

“Overall it was a good weekend, really happy with the race, I gave everything I had. Got a good start, got out there but the problem obviously was that on the first lap, run long on the straightaway, Pirro with the horsepower that he had passed right by me. I knew that I had a faster pace than him all weekend and once he got by me I know he had grip and could keep a little distance on me. Once his grip went away and he started making some little mistakes, I put a pretty hard pass on him, just put my head down and went as fast as I could possibly go and gave everything I had to try to catch Espargaro. There at the end, at the last five or six lap, four laps I had no grip and was spinning in the corner and obviously I was still pushing and catching on to Espargaro little by little but I ran out of time and run out of grip. Thanks to my team, they have done a fantastic job over the last few weekends. Its really a pleasure to ride a bike again in which you feel comfortable.”

Claudio Corti

“Unfortunately today on the second lap Barbera crashed into me causing me to fall without being able to do anything to prevent it. I had a good setup for this race and I could have done well. After the crash and having suffered a concussion, I was taken to the circuit’s Clinic to get checked and later on I was taken to the local hospital at Brno for a TAC. Everything is ok with me but they are keeping me overnight under observation as a precaution, I will be able to fly back to Italy tomorrow. See you all at Silverstone.”

Sergio Verbena, MotoGP Technical Director

“For the third race in a row we have been very close to finishing the race as best CRT. Colin ha done a fantastic job and has finished at only one second from Espargaró. The progress we are making is constant, we improve both during free practices and race and are definitely closing gap with the other CRTs. Unfortunately Claudio was taken out by Barberá. He could have done a good race and finish in the points but this is racing and things like this happen. We are constantly improving, the progress made through the season has been constant and we are becoming more competitive. Our goal is to finish the season following this line of work. We are currently the second best CRT in the general standing, Espargaro is very far from us but we will try to maintain our position.”