Espargaró 8th-fastest despite physical problems, Pons 25th
The MotoGP season has begun at Qatar with the first two Moto2 practice session getting underway today. In the first session HP 40 Pons rider Aleix Espargaro suffered a violent shaking with his bike which cause a strong pull on the neck. Despite this annoyance Espargaró could complete the work on this first day, achieving a good pace in preparation for Sunday’s race.
More trouble had his teammate Axel Pons. His first session was marked by a problem with the engine brake which delayed all the work planned for the start of the Grand Prix. Regardless of this Axel made progress in the second practice, improving his laptime by more than two seconds. Tomorrow Moto2 will only have one free practice session.
# 40. Aleix Espargaró: 8º – 2’02’577
The bike broke out in the first session, giving me whiplash and a strong pull on the neck. They couldn’t do anything for me in the Clinica Mobile, the area was too swollen and the massages made it worse. And at the end of the day I also started to get a heavy headache. But I wouldn’t say it was a hindrance, I would have ended the day the same without these problems. The day went well, although I have to improve some things. One I already know which is that everyone at the end is able to lose half a second in the last lap and it’s a bit hard for me to get that lap. It is my handicap, but we must bear in mind that it’s only the first day. The good thing is that I’ve been in front in both sessions. We’ve solved some problems that I had with chattering in the fast corners and with the rhythm that I have it doesn’t matter much if I start from first or tenth, because in the first two laps of the race I know I could be in front. But we must try to do something. The bike works very well and we made progress. We’ll see what happens tomorrow, because this Grand Prix, with three days of training at night and the warm up the day before the race, it is quite strange.
# 80. Axel Pons: 25º – 2’04’055
The first session was a bit difficult. It’s been year since we’ve last raced in Losail and the track was very dirty and it took me a while until I got the feeling for it. We’ve also had some problems with the engine brake and clutch. In the second practice we could improve this and everything worked much better, I kept progressing and I felt much more comfortable. I think from one session to another we have taken a step forward and I hope to confirm this in the only session we have tomorrow. We are far away from the front, but we are getting closer and tomorrow I have to take that small step to confront the qualification and the race in the best way possible.
Source: HP 40 Pons