Australian GP: Gresini Racing Friday practice report

SAN CARLO HONDA GRESINI RIDERS STRUGGLE FOR GRIP AT COOL PHILLIP ISLAND Warm spring sunshine welcomed the MotoGP paddock to Phillip Island for the start of the Australian Grand Prix this afternoon but several days of cold, wet and windy weather...

SAN CARLO HONDA GRESINI RIDERS STRUGGLE FOR GRIP AT COOL PHILLIP ISLAND

Warm spring sunshine welcomed the MotoGP paddock to Phillip Island for the start of the Australian Grand Prix this afternoon but several days of cold, wet and windy weather took their toll on the track surface, which was even more precarious than usual. San Carlo Honda Gresini rider Alex de Angelis made the best of the conditions to lap fourth fastest in an impressive performance on board his satellite Honda RC212V, although his team-mate Toni Elias struggled to get to grips with the cool track surface and faces another uphill battle ahead of tomorrow's qualifying session.

Alex De Angelis (4th; 1'31.786): "That was a very good session -- I had a really positive feeling with the bike from the beginning but we expected that to be the case because we have been very strong at all the fast tracks this year. We struggled for rear grip and the bike was moving around a lot but I think this has been the same problem for everybody today. There was one moment where I hit a damp patch under braking and the rear came around on me. It looked pretty dangerous on television but I can assure you it was under control! We definitely have plenty of room for improvement tomorrow and even though we are in a good position today we know our rivals will get much faster so we have to match their progress."

Toni Elias (13th 1'33.304): "I expected us to have traction issues here this weekend but I honestly didn't think they would be quite this bad. I have to say this is the worst the tyres have performed at any of the circuits we've been to this year. It's a strange circuit with very particular demands and we've struggled to come to terms with them today. We have a lot of work to do but we're not scared of that, as we have shown many times already this season."

Fausto Gresini - Team Manager: "I'm definitely satisfied with Alex's performance today. We knew he liked this track very much and obviously it is good to see him in fourth position. I'm sure he has the potential to keep staying at the top of the classification also for the rest of the weekend. Toni has some traction problems, which didn't allow him to ride as he wanted. We'll check the data and see how we can sort the problem and help Toni get a better feeling with his bike. "

-credit: gresini racing

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Series MotoGP
Drivers Toni Elias , Alex de Angelis , Phillip Island