ALEIX ESPARGARÓ AND MAVERICK VIÑALES FIRST AND SECOND RESPECTIVELY ON THE FIRST DAY IN BARCELONA
The GP of Catalunya weekend kicked off in the best possible way for Aprilia Racing with their riders in first and second place in the standings after the first two practice sessions.
On a track characterised, as always, by poor grip, both Aleix and Maverick dedicated a lot of time in the two sessions preparing for the race, especially in terms of tyre management, one of the factors that could prove to be decisive in the race.
In any case, both demonstrated great speed, resulting in the two best times of the day and already clear in the morning session, where Maverick finished with the second best time and Aleix with the fourth best. The two did even better in the faster second session, occupying the first two spots and also demonstrating an outstanding race pace.
1st - 1'39.402
"It’s always important to start well and to find the right feeling with the bike and with the track. Obviously it’s only Friday, but Maverick and I were both competitive and that renders merit to the team’s hard work. On this track grip is really low, so tyre choice and how to manage them to the end of the race are fundamental issues. Now we’ll have to carefully analyse the spin levels and the speed on corners for each different tyre in order to make the right choices and set up the best strategy."
2nd - 1'39.705
"I am very, very happy and not just because of the fast lap. On this track, the true difference will be made by knowing how to manage the tyres and from this point of view, we’ve done a good job. I’m convinced that tomorrow in FP3 the times will drop even lower. When you put the new tyre on here, it almost seems like you’re riding a different bike! In any case, we’ll keep moving forward. We’re on the right track and it would be fantastic to take that last step right here, on my home track and with my fan club trackside cheering me on."