ALEIX AND MAVERICK IMPROVE BUT ARE STILL NOT IN THE TOP 10
Despite the forecast based on the past few days, the first two MotoGP sessions in Buriram (Thailand) were held on dry asphalt – conditions that may very well hold true only for today, as long as there are no bizarre changes in the weather (which is never very consistent here).
In FP1, the Aprilia riders spent a good deal of time adapting the RS-GP setting to the characteristics of the circuit. Making this job difficult is the fact that the 2019 data (the most recent available) refers to a substantially different prototype than the one introduced in 2022.
During the FP2 afternoon session, Aleix and Maverick were among the few riders (12 out of 24) who improved their times, but not enough to clinch a spot in the top 10. The seventh-place and eleventh-place session times respectively for Espargaró and Viñales, highlight both improvement and the need for another step forward in order to join the battle at the top.
"I can’t be disappointed because I’m riding well. In the phases where performance depends on me such as braking and turns, we are not slow at all. The problem is the grip. Coming out of turns we lose a lot of time sliding around and that basically costs us the entire gap. This is our limitation at the moment, so we need to focus all our efforts on this."
"In the last few races we weren’t at the performance level that we expected to be at and we need to work toward understanding why. I have an incredible feeling with the front but we’re lacking traction when grip is less than optimum. If we look at the times, I only lost 6 tenths, despite having an iffy feeling, so we need to analyse all the data well and find the right compromise in terms of settings."