M2: Portuguese GP: Team Aspar preview

This coming weekend the Grand Prix of Portugal marks the penultimate round of the 2010 season. Following an overseas adventure the World Championship returns to Europe for back to back races in Portugal and Valencia. Both rounds, like the Grand...

This coming weekend the Grand Prix of Portugal marks the penultimate round of the 2010 season. Following an overseas adventure the World Championship returns to Europe for back to back races in Portugal and Valencia. Both rounds, like the Grand Prix of Aragon, see the return of free practice on Friday morning, giving the riders more time to get ready for the races. There is also a change to the schedule on Sunday, with Moto2 set to compete first at Estoril, and as with the MotoGP class the intermediate category already has a Spanish winner in Toni Elias and can have a Spanish runner-up.

That man is Mapfre Aspar rider Julian Simon.The Toledo youngster lies second in the championship with a two-point advantage over his closest rival, Andrea Iannone. Last year in Portugal he dominated every practice session in the 125cc class and escaped in the race but eventually finished twelfth after a crash. With that lesson learned, this year he returns with the same enthusiasm to a circuit that he loves looking for his first victory in Moto2. His team-mate Mike Di Meglio heads to Portugal on the back of a strong performance at Phillip Island and with renewed confidence thanks to a sixth-placed finish -- his best result of the year. Last year he finished second in the 250cc race here and he is hoping for a similar outcome this weekend.

Julian Simon:
"Estoril is a circuit that I love, and where I usually get on the pace with relative ease. Last year I was really quick in practice but in the race I paid for being too keen to wrap up the title. I still have good memories though and I am in good form after the flyaways and raring to return to the podium. At present, the runner-up spot is in my hands so I'm going to fight in the two remaining races to get it. The Estoril circuit is characterised by heavy braking, a characteristic that I like and one that suits me. It is quite technical so you have to work carefully to get a good setting that allows you to corner well."

Mike Di Meglio:
"I spent a few days after I got back from the flyaways resting at home and thinking about how things have been going for us. The last race in Australia went pretty well and throughout the whole weekend we were up front -- I even led the race. After trying a lot of things and working hard I finally found a way to go fast and feel I have adapted to the four-stroke. After a bit of a rest I started to train again and to think about the next round at Estoril. It's a circuit I like a lot and I look forward to putting into practice the things I learnt in Australia. I hope to finish strongly in the two remaining races to thank the team for all the hard work they have done for me."

-source: team aspar

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Toni Elias , Julian Simon , Andrea Iannone , Phillip Island