Smith glad to start 2010

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Bradley Smith was back on his Aprilia of the Bancaja Aspar team at Montmeló on Thursday.

British rider Bradley Smith recorded 50 laps and a best time of 1’53.8 on Thursday, as he completed his first day at the test at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Making a return to riding after three months off during the winter, Smith told motogp.com he was delighted to have had a solid day’s work before returning on Friday.

“It felt a bit strange today – a little bit rusty,” he said. “I’m just trying to blow the cobwebs off and get back into the feeling of pushing the bike to its limits, finding how much grip it’s got which was a little bit difficult today because of the lack of track temperature. Throughout the day we improved steadily and lap times tumbled down, they weren’t particularly fast but they improved in every session. We kept working hard, we rode 50 laps and have started 2010, which feels awesome.”

He continued: “Here has always been a slight bogey track for me, especially with Aprilia. I’ve had a 13th and an 8th over the past couple of years so it will be important to work a bit more on the direction we need to go, and try and get a good feeling. I see this track as being one of the critical moments of this year’s season. It’s on the end of three back-to-back weekends, so if we can finish this test knowing that we can go to the race strong, then we’ve already got that confidence. When you go to a track and you’re already a little bit nervous, it’s a bit worrying. But regardless it has been a good day and nice to get back on the Aprilia.”

Smith intends to continue where he left off on Friday, getting more track time before the official test in Valencia, from March 1-3.

“It’s the first day, which is always a struggle when you’re trying to get back into it,” he explained. “We haven’t had any silly crashes, we stayed on the bike and we put in 50 solid laps. Hopefully we can put in more tomorrow and go away from this test very happy.”

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