May 17, 2013
© 2013, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.
by David Swarts
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FIM Moto2 World Championship: Scott Redding (45).
FIM Moto2 World Championship
Le Mans, France
May 17, 2013
Free Practice Two Results (all using Honda engines and Dunlop tires):
1. Scott REDDING, UK (KALEX), 1:38.283
2. Thomas LUTHI, Switzerland (SUTER), 1:38.654
3. Julian SIMON, Spain (KALEX), 1:38.660
4. Takaaki NAKAGAMI, Japan (KALEX), 1:38.863
5. Dominique AEGERTER, Switzerland (SUTER), 1:38.894
6. Nicolas TEROL, Spain (SUTER), 1:38.907
7. Mattia PASINI, Italy (SPEED UP), 1:38.989
8. Xavier SIMEON, Belgium (KALEX), 1:39.005
9. Pol ESPARGARO, Spain (KALEX), 1:39.042
10. Simone CORSI, Italy (SPEED UP), 1:39.054
11. Randy KRUMMENACHER, Switzerland (SUTER), 1:39.084
12. Marcel SCHROTTER, Germany (KALEX), 1:39.133
13. Mika KALLIO, Finland (KALEX), 1:39.174
14. Esteve RABAT, Spain (KALEX), 1:39.203
15. Jordi TORRES, Spain (SUTER), 1:39.271
16. Johann ZARCO, France (SUTER), 1:39.383
17. Ricard CARDUS, Spain (SPEED UP), 1:39.435
18. Alex DE ANGELIS, San Marino (SPEED UP), 1:39.464
19. Ratthapark WILAIROT, Thailand (SUTER), 1:39.675
20. Gino REA, UK (FTR), 1:39.753
21. Mike DI MEGLIO, France (MOTOBI), 1:39.754
22. Sandro CORTESE, Germany (KALEX), 1:39.784
23. Toni ELIAS, Spain (KALEX), 1:39.871
24. Steven ODENDAAL, South Africa (SPEED UP), 1:39.932
25. Danny KENT, UK (TECH 3), 1:40.024
26. Anthony WEST, Australia (SPEED UP), 1:40.030
27. Axel PONS, Spain (KALEX), 1:40.057
28. Louis ROSSI, France (TECH 3), 1:40.537
29. Yuki TAKAHASHI, Japan (MORIWAKI), 1:40.586
30. Hafizh SYAHRIN, Malaysia (KALEX), 1:40.647
31. Alberto MONCAYO, Spain (SPEED UP), 1:40.780
32. Kyle SMITH, UK (KALEX), 1:40.867
33. Doni Tata PRADITA, Indonesia (SUTER), 1:40.874
34. Rafid Topan SUCIPTO, Indonesia (SPEED UP), 1:42.506
More, from a press release issued by Marc VDS Racing Team:
Le Mans, France - 17 May 2013: Scott Redding wasted no time in stamping his authority on proceedings during the opening day at Le Mans, topping the timesheet in both free practice session to lay down a marker for his championship rivals.
Mika Kallio was a little disappointed to finish the day only 13th fastest, despite improving his lap time this afternoon, to close to within a second of his Marc VDS teammate. The 30-year-old Finn still lacks the all-important confidence in the front of his Kalex Moto23 machine, a situation he is confident will be rectified by set-up changes ahead of tomorrow morning's third and final free practice session.
Jules Danilo, who is making his Moto3 Grand Prix debut as a wild card rider this weekend at Le Mans, ended the day 17th fastest overall. The French rider, who celebrates his 18th birthday tomorrow, is confident of making further improvements ahead of the all-important qualifying session.
After struggling to find confidence in the front tyre in the cold conditions of this morning's free practice session, it was the rear that caused Livio Loi issues this afternoon. Pumping from the rear suspension under acceleration meant the 16-year-old Belgian was unable to push for a fast lap time and he ended the day 20th on the timesheet.
Scott Redding #45: 1st - 1'38.203
"I like the Le Mans circuit, so my confidence was high coming into this weekend, especially off the back of three good results at tracks that were either new or a little unkind to me in the past. I'm feeling good on the bike here; we've had a couple of small issues during practice, but nothing that we haven't been able to sort out quickly. The lap times today came without really pushing hard, so I know there's more to come in qualifying if I need it. But this is Le Mans, so who knows what the weather will throw at us tomorrow. It could be dry or it could be wet, either way I think we're in a good way here with the bike and the set-up."
Mika Kallio #36: 13th - 1'39.174
"We ran the set-up we tested at Almeria this morning, but it didn't give me the feeling with the front end that I was looking for. It meant I didn't have the confidence on corner entry and that lost me a lot of time. We made some improvements to the front for the second session, but there's still something missing. The bike just doesn't feel right when I trail the brake into the corners. We have a few ideas for tomorrow, but we need to sit down tonight and decide in which direction to go. I'm not so happy with 13th but with the problems we've had, to finish within a second of Scott's time is not too bad."
Jules Danilo #95: 17th - 1'46.157
"We had some problems with the bike this morning, but the team managed to get everything sorted for this afternoon's second free practice session. I'm happy with how things have gone today, as I felt confident on the bike this afternoon and we managed to improve the lap time with every exit. We still have a few things we want to improve on the bike but, overall, it's been a good opening day at my first ever Grand Prix."
Livio Loi #11: 20th - 1'46.295
"The track temperature was very low this morning, so it was difficult to have confidence in the front tyre. Conditions had improved for FP2, but I had a real problem with the rear suspension pumping under acceleration. Even with a new rear tyre the bike was unsettled on the throttle and I was losing time out of every corner. We need to fix the problem tonight ready for tomorrow, as you can win a lot of time on a Moto3 bike by getting on the gas both hard and early on corner exit, which I couldn't do today."
More, from a press release issued by MAPFRE Aspar Moto2 Team:
NICO TEROL FINDS CONSISTENCY IN FRANCE
MAPFRE Aspar rider sixth fastest and on the pace in free practice, Jordi Torres inside a second of 'pole' in fifteenth
Just a second covered the top fifteen Moto2 riders at the end of the first day of free practice at Le Mans although Scott Redding seems to have the edge at the moment, the British rider ending both sessions on top of the timesheets and inside the circuit record from 2011. With rain forecast for the rest of the weekend, however, it promises to be another unpredictable round of Moto2 action.
The MAPFRE Aspar Team made a strong start to the weekend with both riders satisfied with their performances. Each rider clocked up 44 laps, with Nico Terol fast and consistent throughout and Jordi Torres adapting quickly to a new circuit for him. Terol was fifth fastest this morning and sixth this afternoon, comfortably maintaing a position in the higher reaches of the timing screens. Torres has enjoyed his first outing here at Le Mans and he did a great job to lap within a second of pacesetter Redding and clock the fifteenth fastest time overall.
6º Nico Terol 1.38.907 (44 vueltas): "We set a good consistent pace today and were constantly in touch with the top guys. I am happy about that and also about my feeling for the bike here. We still have some corners to improve but that is what the second day is for and we can be satisfied so far. Redding is the only guy who seems to have a bit more pace than the rest but otherwise it is extremely close. I have changed my riding style a little today to try and improve in certain areas compared to last year but there are still some places where I need to improve more. We are on the right lines though and tomorrow we will work hard to find what we are missing. We need some more grip and there are two corners in particular where we need to find the right gear ratio."
15th Jordi Torres 1.39.271 (44 laps): "After seeing the track so many times on television it was different to how I expected it. It is quite unusual and a lot of fun and it was quite easy to learn. Our pace is good but we need to get a better understanding of some of the linked corners and then we will be a few tenths quicker still. This morning was a good shakedown and then this afternoon we made some important changes to the set-up and pushed from there. We have worked on improving the response from the rear shock and I think this is the way for us to go, although we need to confirm it tomorrow. The lap times are close here, you only have to look at the fact that I am a second off the top even though I am in fifteenth. It will be a tough battle tomorrow but I am happy and I know we can be even more competitive."
More, from a press release issued by ItalTrans/AGP Racing Team:
The best first day of any race week-end this season so far. The combined Free Practice board sees Julian Simon placed third, just three tenth from the provisional pole, while Takaaki Nakagami is immediately behind him, fourth, divided from the team mate by just two tenth. Julian is quite happy with the result – he is always working hard, but only rarely has been rewarded. This morning, together with his crew, he revisited the technical path from this winter onward, choosing the solution that better suits to progress. Nakagami began in the morning with a basic set-up that subsequently has been modified to suit this specific track. In both cases, the result has been interesting and represent a good step ahead towards Sunday's race.
Julian Simon (1'38”660 – 3th ) “Absolutely better than a fortnight ago. The new setting gave me immediately a better feeling with the front. We are competitive, and on a track that I love. I hope the weather is going to allow us a few more hours to complete the scheduled work and prepare the better possible bike for Sunday's race. We have had tough moments, and I'm quite happy for the team – they are always doing a great job”.
Takaaki Nakagami (1'38”863 - 4th ) “This morning, to be honest, I was a little worried, because the feeling was not great, at the beginning. Than, we began to work according to schedule and make changes – big changes – and now the situation is by far better. The front is the way we wanted, and we know how to work on the rear”.
More, from a press release issued by QMMF Racing Team:
West chases better set-up – Sucipto looks for better lines around the Le Mans circuit
QMMF Racing Team riders Anthony West and Rafid Topan Sucipto took the first day of testing at the French Grand Prix as a valuable learning experience.
West, who had tried to iron out a few ongoing issues with his Speed Up bike during a private testing session in Portugal last week, used the previous set-up from the last race at Jerez as a starting point for the Le Mans Grand Prix. But he soon struggled with a familiar problem, a certain lack of front end feel that can only be fixed sacrificing grip on the rear. The 31-year-old Australian and his team are still cautious with the introduction of radical changes on the suspension side, since West’s Öhlins specialist fell ill and wasn’t able to attend the French Grand Prix.
West’s young team-mate Rafid Topan Sucipto made rapid progress on the twisty Le Mans circuit and improved remarkably from the first to the second free practice session. He still has problems to find the right line through the slow hairpins, but spent a lot of time analyzing and comparing his own riding with the cornering of his experienced team-mate in order to be stronger on Saturday.
Anthony West – 26th in 1.40,030
“I don’t have any feeling for the front and as soon as we make changes that give me this feeling, I lose all the grip on the rear. It is the same story we had previously, but here at Le Mans it is worse than on any other track, which is a bit of a surprise for me. Not having our suspension guy here makes things even more difficult. We found some set-up solutions during our test that have the potential to make the bike better, but we haven’t been able to thoroughly evaluate all aspects of these changes, which is why we considered it too much of a risk to introduce these changes here at the race. But since we are so slow, it’s maybe better to take the risk and see what happens. As far as I am concerned, I just need a good sleep, forget about today and try to improve tomorrow!”
Rafid Topan Sucipto – 34th in 1.42,506
“I like Le Mans, it’s an interesting track and I’ve made a lot of progress in a short time, improving by more than one and a half seconds from the first to the second practice session. But I am still struggling with the tight hairpins: I can’t keep the best line and I’m running wide all the time, so we are looking at both the set-up of the bike and my riding and see how we can improve tomorrow!”