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Apr 29, 2011

Takahashi Leads Wet Second Moto2 Practice In Portugal

FIM Moto2 World Championship
Estoril, Portugal
April 29
Free Practice Two Results (wet conditions, all using Honda engines and Dunlop tires):

1. Yuki TAKAHASHI, Japan (MORIWAKI), 1:51.606
2. Ricard CARDUS, Spain (MORIWAKI), 1:51.960
3. Michele PIRRO, Italy (MORIWAKI), 1:53.310
4. Bradley SMITH, Great Britain (TECH 3), 1:53.470
5. Marc MARQUEZ, Spain (SUTER), 1:53.980
6. Randy KRUMMENACHER, Switzerland (KALEX), 1:54.162
7. Xavier SIMEON, Belgium (TECH 3), 1:54.218
8. Raffaele DE ROSA, Italy (MORIWAKI), 1:54.281
9. Javier FORES, Spain (SUTER), 1:55.285
10. Scott REDDING, Great Britain (SUTER), 1:55.628
11. Mashel AL NAIMI, Qatar (MORIWAKI), 1:55.880
12. Alex BALDOLINI, Italy (SUTER), 1:56.071
13. Santiago HERNANDEZ, Colombia (FTR), 1:57.181
14. Simone CORSI, Italy (FTR), 1:57.297
15. Kenny NOYES, USA (FTR), 1:57.316
16. Steven ODENDAAL, South Africa (SUTER), 1:58.796
17. Dominique AEGERTER, Switzerland (SUTER), 2:07.178
18. Alex DE ANGELIS, San Marino (MOTOBI), 8:13.642
19. Mika KALLIO, Finland (SUTER), 27:01.777
20. Anthony WEST, Australia (MZ-RE HONDA), 43:28.544

No other riders rode during the session.

More, from a press release issued by Marc VDS Racing Team:


Marc VDS Racing Team riders Scott Redding and Mika Kallio made a brilliant return to form, as the Moto2 World Championship resumed at the Estoril circuit in Portugal today.

With forecast rain and thunderstorms that frequently hit the 2.599 miles circuit failing to materialise this morning, Redding and Kallio were both in scintillating form as they took advantage of an unexpected dry track to both finish inside the top six at the end of the first practice session.

Redding made a sparkling return to the top of the ultra-competitive Moto2 field after a frustrating start to the 2011 season saw him unable to score points in the opening two races in Qatar and Jerez.

The British rider's best lap of 1.42.602 saw him lead the way for much of a closely contested first session and he eventually finished in fourth position, a result that provided the 18-year-old with a welcome confidence boost as he found a positive feeling with the front-end of his Suter MMXI machine after a modification to the position of his footpegs.

Finnish rider Kallio, preparing to make his 150th Grand Prix in Sunday's 26-lap race, was sixth quickest as he made significant progress with a new weight distribution setting that boosted his confidence in the corners. Kallio clocked a best time of 1.42.780 to finish just over 0.3s away from the quickest pace.

Buoyed by their performance in this morning's opening session, Redding and Kallio were looking forward to evaluating further set-up changes this afternoon when rain started to fall just minutes before the start of the second session.

The initial heavy downpour saw Redding and Kallio abort plans to take to the track with track conditions preventing any meaningful testing taking place. The track did dry out towards the end and Redding ventured out in mixed conditions to complete eight laps. Kallio only completed one lap before heavy rain once again started to fall right at the end of the session.

Scott Redding #45 - 1.42.602 - 25 laps
"That was a lot more like it after what has been a pretty difficult start to the season. I felt better right from the start this morning because we changed the footpegs back to a position I used last season and I immediately felt a lot more comfortable. I've not been able to get a confident feeling with the front-end so far this season but moving my body position forward has put more weight on the front and I felt like I could push with the same trust and confidence that I had with the front at the end of last season. In the dry I'm really confident and I actually felt I was doing much better in the tricky conditions this afternoon. The track was pretty greasy and it is in those conditions where I'll admit I'm probably at my weakest, so I went out and just got a few laps under my belt and some feeling in case we get those conditions for the race. You never know what is going to happen with the weather in Estoril, but I feel we are prepared for whatever the elements throw at us."

Mika Kallio #36 - 1.42.780 - 22 laps
"Today was a very positive day even though we lost one complete session because of the rain this afternoon. This morning was a big improvement compared to where I have been in the first two races and I felt much more confident on the bike. At the last race in Jerez we moved a lot of weight to the front of the bike to help improve the turning performance and before I went out this morning we'd added even more weight because we felt we'd gone in a good direction. Although it is opposite to the way I normally set-up my bike, it was an instant improvement and as I adapt more to this setting I am getting more comfortable but more importantly I'm getting faster. This weekend is my 150th Grand Prix so hopefully I can deliver a good result for the Marc VDS Racing Team because everybody has been working incredibly hard to get us back in the top six where we belong."

Michael Bartholemy - Team Manager
"Today was a very good day for the Marc VDS Racing Team and long overdue after what has been a difficult start to the 2011 World Championship. I'd say today was a typical Estoril experience with the conditions changing a lot. But we have to be very satisfied with this morning. Scott dominated the first session for a long spell and it was only at the end when he tried another tyre that some of the other riders put him back in fourth. But Scott looked like the Scott of old today and he has shown a good pace. It was also important for him to do some laps in mixed conditions this afternoon. The conditions were very similar to this at the start of the race in Jerez and Scott found it difficult, but he has gained some valuable experience this afternoon. Mika was also impressive today, so if the race is dry then we can be confident that he can be very competitive. He only managed one lap this afternoon so we can't make any judgement on his potential if the race is wet. But I'm happy that he's started to show more of his true potential. When you leave the first two races without any points then the pressure increases on everybody, but we have bounced back well today and we are very optimistic for the rest of the weekend."

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