november 19, 2018 - Aprilia Racing

Aleix Espargaró crashes in the pouring rain in Valencia, obliterating a weekend spent among the protagonists

Aleix Espargaró crashed in the early stages of the Valencia GP, a race troubled by the rain - and decimated by the numerous crashes - which also forced officials to wave the red flag and schedule a second start for the riders who had managed to stay in the saddle.

After a weekend consistently among the best, in warm up Aleix confirmed his performance with a brilliant second place time, demonstrating his competitiveness in the wet and the progress made by the RS-GP evolution brought to the race in the final rounds of the championship. Starting from the eighth spot on the grid, Aleix maintained the position, preparing for a race which, in heavy rainfall, promised to be long and difficult. However, on the third laps, the asphalt conditions betrayed him and his race ended early in the gravel. It is an outcome that leaves a bitter taste because of a result that went up in smoke and which, given the trend throughout the weekend, would have been well within his potential.

After the interruption in the fourteenth lap due to the increasing rainfall, Scott Redding started from the ninth spot at the second start and finished eleventh.

The Valencia race saw the Aprilia RS-GPs of Espargaró and Redding in livery (RED), to raise awareness among MotoGP enthusiasts about the issue of HIV, one of the great evils of our time. Since its foundation (RED) has contributed over 500 million USD to the Global Fund to fight HIV. (RED)'s aid has had an impact on 110 million people through prevention, treatment, counseling and support services, with a focus on countries with a high proportion of the HIV virus transmitted from mother to child.

Aleix Espargaró

“I am angry because today we had a great opportunity. We showed that we were strong and competitive throughout the weekend, even in the warm up session. With good sensations, a good pace, consistent and fast in the wet. With that rain, I tried to be careful in the early laps and maintain my position, anticipating a race that was sure to be very long. I had a high side on turn three, which is a bad place to crash, but the track conditions were really at the limit and visibility was practically zero. I think that the red flag should come out before the riders start crashing and that it should be used to prevent the accidents.”

Scott Redding

“This was a rather dangerous race. At the start, I couldn't see anything, there was so much water being kicked up by the other bikes. Only when I had some free track in front of me was I able to pick up the pace a bit. The bike was doing a lot of aquaplaning, like the others were, and the numerous crashes are a demonstration of that. I think it would have been right to stop the race earlier than it was. The conditions were truly risky. I think that my biggest limitation today was the rear tyre cooling down. I was constantly at the limit with grip, even trying to take it very easy on the throttle. After the second start, things were substantially the same for me and, considering the many riders who retired, at a certain point I was just thinking about taking home the best possible result.”