Pol Espargaro to start Australian Grand Prix from ninth
Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Pol Espargaro produced a tireless display of perseverance today in Australia and will begin the 16th round of the 2015 MotoGP World Championship from the third row of the starting grid.
When the second day of action kicked off, the determined Spaniard got straight to work at the breathtaking 4.4 kilometre Phillip Island circuit as he pushed relentlessly in this morning’s FP3 session. Nevertheless, his determination wasn’t rewarded as Espargaro found himself in 16th position when the chequered flag fell, which meant that he needed to participate in Qualifying 1.
However, after a solid run to 5th in Free Practice 4, the 24 year confidently got into gear when the first 15 minute session began. He set a best lap of 1’29.647 and then returned to the pit box in order to save a tyre for Qualifying 2. Once it started, Espargaro launched into his qualifying campaign aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1 and sped to a time of 1’29.222.
The young Spaniard then attempted to lower his time further on his second run, yet it was this lap that was his personal best and his performance will see him start from 9th place on the grid. Tomorrow, Espargaro will intend to bolt forwards and join the hunt for the top satellite position in what will be a tightly contested race.
“Today was finally a positive day for us in Phillip Island. This morning during FP3, things still weren’t really going to plan, but we made some significant steps forward in Free Practice 4. This session is virtually the only time in the weekend that we can ride without any pressure of having to do a good lap, so we used the 30 minutes to evaluate different ideas. In addition, I did a few laps behind Valentino, which helped me to understand which line to take in some corners. Anyway, the modifications that we tried with our setting, improved my feeling a lot and I started to feel comfortable again. My rhythm improved straight away, as well as my riding style and also the lines I was running, so I was confident about a solid qualifying session. In QP1, I was able to set a good lap time during my first and only run, so we were able to save a rear tyre for qualifying practice 2, but that meant I had to watch the end of the session from the garage. Straight after, in QP2, I felt like I didn’t achieve the best that I could today, as I made some small mistakes in every lap of my second run. Still, after the somewhat challenging start that we had to face this weekend, I’m definitely satisfied with this result as we gave our all and we are not far off the pace which is promising for tomorrow.”
Source: Tech3 Communications