Espargaro enjoying ART bike and seeing good potential at Estoril
The MotoGP riders experienced similar conditions to those of Jerez on their opening day of action in Portugal, as track conditions were once again affected by rain on Friday. It was overnight showers that were the issue this time, as certain sections of the Estoril circuit were overly damp in the morning. A sizeable number of riders elected to stay in their garages for either the entire session or a sizeable portion of it, with the risk of a crash in the puddles not deemed to be worth it.
In the afternoon session, conditions were considerably better, leading to the entire MotoGP field finally being able to put in useful laps for Sunday’s Portuguese Grand Prix. The top time of the day went to World Championship leader and Jerez race winner Casey Stoner, with a fastest lap of 1’38.396.
In fourteenth today was Aleíx Espargaró – the highest placing CRT bike in the Spanish Grand Prix and the second quickest this Friday. The Spaniard will work further on his bike setup on Saturday in order to be well prepared for a race which is almost a home GP. He was half a second down on De Puniet in the combined timesheet.
14th Aleix Espargaró (1.41.634, 24 laps): “Our trajectory is going up. I think the ART is going well here and I had fun today. Besides the two straights, on this track we can corner just behind the factory bikes. It was tough to ride this morning, but for the afternoon the entire circuit was dry besides the final two corners before the straight. We are improving a lot in terms of electronics and chassis and are close to the factory bikes on sections 2, 3 and 4, but in the straights we can’t do anything to keep with them. I was riding alongside Lorenzo and Pedrosa today and when they straighten up they just disappear.”
Source: Aspar Team