SAN CARLO HONDA GRESINI RIDERS WARM TO THE CHALLENGE AT SEPANGNG Having left the cool spring climate of Phillip Island some 6,500km behind them, San Carlo Honda Gresini pair Toni Elias and Alex de Angelis returned to action in a more tropical ...
SAN CARLO HONDA GRESINI RIDERS WARM TO THE CHALLENGE AT SEPANGNG
Having left the cool spring climate of Phillip Island some 6,500km behind them, San Carlo Honda Gresini pair Toni Elias and Alex de Angelis returned to action in a more tropical environment today as 31C temperatures and 54% humidity welcomed the MotoGP paddock to Sepang for the penultimate round of the season.
De Angelis had been quite comfortable on the cold Australian track, finishing in a fantastic fourth position, and his settings from that race adapted well to a very different kind of layout here -- even though he ended the session in twelfth place. Elias found the warmer conditions much more to his liking and after a tough weekend 'down under' the Spaniard was right back on the pace today as he clocked the seventh fastest lap time.
Toni Elias (7th 2'03.294): "For us on a Friday seventh place is pretty good! Hopefully we can improve on it tomorrow. I love the track and I love the hot conditions, especially because the tyres work so much better -- not like in Phillip Island! We've certainly started the weekend with more things in our favour than in Australia but there is still a lot to do. Even though we are having less problem finding grip here you can never have too much so that is our target -- to keep working with the bike to get more and more traction because when we all try to set those lap times at the end of qualifying tomorrow the more traction you have the higher you will qualify up the grid!"
Alex De Angelis (12th; 2'04.042): "I started the session quite strongly because we used my setting from Phillip Island for my first two runs and I was comfortable with it to the point that we were running comfortably inside the top seven or eight. For my third run we used a more 'standard' setting on the other bike in the hope the lap times might improve but instead of that they got worse. It's a shame but sometimes this is the sacrifice you have to make to get a clear direction about which way to go with the set-up and we have that now. We'll go back to something similar to the setting I started out with today, with the main focus on trying to improve it under hard braking, as I was running wide a lot today -- especially in the last corner."
Fausto Gresini - Team Manager: "The first good thing about this place is that it is warmer than Phillip Island and that is definitely better for us! It hasn't been such a bad first day at all. Both riders have worked hard on their set-up and although they have work to do we at least have a clear direction which way to work. Hopefully we make the right choices and give the pair of them an even more competitive package to start out with tomorrow morning."
-credit: gresini racing