Alex Rins – From the console to the track
Repsol Moto3 rider Álex Rins is showing excellent talent for adapting to tracks at which he has never ridden before.
A rookie year in the World Championship is always difficult, and not just because of the high level of competition. Riders such as Álex Rins, Spanish Moto3 champion last season, has been facing a calendar on which 13 of the 17 tracks are completely unknown to him. Last weekend at the Japanese GP, the Repsol rider began the three-race stint of GPs at new tracks with a fourth place. His 119 points and second place in the Rookie Of The Year standings show just how good he is at adapting to the characteristics of circuits only previously experienced in videogames.
Preparing for each race on the Asiatic tour begins on the Tuesday and Wednesday. Race visualization from previous years and memorizing the track from videogames are techniques that help a lot in building up to the actual track time.
However, the hard work for the young riders begins on Thursday, when they arrive in the paddock. This is the moment in which they perform a couple of laps on the scooter of Team Manager and 1999 125cc World Champion, Emilio Alzamora. They also listen attentively to the advice of more experienced riders, such as Marc Márquez. The day concludes with a look at the previous year’s race, in order to analyse things close up. Finding the right lines is crucial for upping pace and being competitive in the race.
This preparation work allows Álex Rins to climb onboard his bike with confidence on Friday for the first real run on a new track. The Repsol rider finishes his build-up by following teammate Miguel Oliveira for a couple of laps, as the Portuguese has one extra year of experience at the majority of circuits.
This method has allowed the Spaniard to place inside the top ten at eight of the ten GPs at new tracks for him. A podium at Le Mans (3rd) and two fourth places (at Misano and Motegi) are his best results at such venues for a rider battling to be the best rookie of 2012. He currently trails leader Romano Fenati by just seven points.
Source: Repsol Media