Alvaro Bautista focuses on tyres on day one at Phillip Island
Busy with a track that is brand new to the Aprilia RS-GP, both Alvaro Bautista and teammate Stefan Bradl spent the first day of free practice at Phillip Island searching for the best tyre solutions.
The exciting Australian track, with its fast turns, is a particularly demanding test bench for the entire Aprilia Racing Team Gresini which, in this rookie year in MotoGP, is tackling races on tracks with drastically different characteristics, building up the experience needed to develop the project.
Both riders improved between FP1 and FP2 and at the end of the day, also characterised by rain showers that ended the first session early, they finished in 19th (Bautista with 1’31,260) and 21st (Bradl with 1’31,577) place.
“This is a very particular track where you have to be very careful choosing the tyres, so today we worked on that more than on the bike’s settings. In particular we tested the asymmetrical front tyre and it seems to provide some advantages compared to the soft tyre, so we’ll keep that in mind as a good option for the race. We did a lot of comparison testing on the rear between the hard and soft tyres. The hard one seems to be a bit more consistent and stable although it doesn’t perform quite as well at the beginning. Tomorrow we’ll continue our work to see how much the advantages that the soft tyre offers at the beginning can compensate for the wear later on.”