Aprilia trio finish tests at Montmelo with Nieto still facing problems
Factory Aprilia threesome Manuel Poggiali, Fonsi Nieto and Spanish GP winner Toni Elias went straight from the proceedings at Jerez to Barcelona this week to take part in further testing.
They completed two days of riding on Tuesday and Wednesday with Poggiali and Elias setting identical fastest times over the duration.
Pumped after his emotional win last weekend, Elias ignored the pain from his injured hand to record 136 laps of the Catalan track. His team-mate Nieto notched 157 circulations and also crashed on the first day. The young Spaniard was not happy with his efforts and is still struggling to find a set-up he prefers with his machine so that he can start the Championship in earnest.
`During these two days, I was hoping to find some measures to help me go faster at this circuit,´ reflected Nieto. ´We have worked on the suspension and the geometry but could not move forwards. The bike does not go where I want it to, and to cure this we will need patience and to keep on working. I am confident in my team and we will find an effective set-up. We are in a difficult situation, but the last thing I want to do is throw in the towel. These days we have worked hard, and even though we have not progressed I am sure there are alternative ideas.´
´We only had a day´s rest after Jerez, but these last two days have been very positive,´ said Elias. ´I worked with slightly different alterations to the set-up compared to the one I used in Jerez and as a consequence we have made further progress with the bike; there are still some things we need to fix in order to go faster. Last Monday I had two stitches taken out of my thumb, but when I am on the bike it still hurts a lot. We are very close to the next race and I hope to be fully recovered by then.´
Winner of the first two Grand Prix, Manuel Poggiali, clocked a laptime of 1'48"5 in the first sessions, but then further lowered his crono on the second day to 1'48"1. Poggiali carried out tyre tests with Dunlop, and also various modifications to his bike's set-up.