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MotoGP Japanese GP

Terminal heat issues cause for concern at Aprilia in MotoGP flyaways

Aleix Espargaro has admitted he is worried about persistent mechanical problems with his Aprilia MotoGP bike brought about by races run in extreme heat, like the recent Indian Grand Prix.

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team crash

The three-time grand prix winner was forced to retire from last Sunday’s race at the Buddh International Circuit when his RS-GP broke down.

Espargaro was at a loss to explain what the actual problem was, but noted that this is a recurring issue for Aprilia at hot venues.

“I don’t know, the bike stopped,” he said of his Indian GP retirement. “It’s a shame. Every time that it’s really, really hot, we suffer. It’s not the first and second season. It’s something we have to improve.

“The bike was boiling, it was very difficult to ride. The bike was competitive to ride but difficult due to the heat.

“But I was good, I was riding really good, really fast in 1m45s high, I had more rear tyre than Brad [Binder] and Joan [Mir].

“So, I think the fourth place was quite OK, but we could not take it.”

Asked if he was worried about this going into the remaining races, which feature extremely hot stops in Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia, Espargaro said: “Yeah, it is [a worry], but every season is the same when we go overseas.

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“Hopefully they can do something, but it’s going to be difficult because we don’t have much time.”

He added: “This is a very good question [as to how Aprilia fixes this], but we are not able to improve.

“The last two, three seasons has been always the same; I would say it’s been [like this] even for four seasons.

“It’s very tricky for us on the hot conditions and with this amount of fairing, aero, it’s even worse.

“We have to improve because it’s not just the riders who suffer, but also all the bikes suffer when it’s hot like this.”

Read Also:

The flyaway portion of the MotoGP season unstuck Espargaro and Aprilia last year as it battled for the championship.

Having won once in the first half of the season and scored four other podiums, Espargaro had just one top five between the Dutch GP and the finale in Valencia (when he was third at Aragon).

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