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Smith: “It is a bit disappointing to crash twice in Q2”

Smith: “It is a bit disappointing to crash twice in Q2”

Two uncharacteristic crashes for Bradley Smith as he pushes for a top spot on the Japanese grid.

Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Bradley Smith will start the Motul Grand Prix of Japan from ninth on the grid after two crashes in Q2. Ahead of Qualifying, Smith suffered a crash during morning practice as he worked on the setting of his bike for the 24 lap race on Sunday, fortunately he was unharmed and his Tech 3 squad were able to fix his Yamaha for the 15 minute shootout. Even in the face of the crash Smith was confident of a strong result having worked hard during FP4, ending the session in fourth and as the leading satellite rider.

As Q2 got underway, Smith immediately began to push and on his second flying lap he slid off at Turn 5. The Brit then sprinted back to his box to mount his second Yamaha M1, everything was going well on his second bike but at the final sector Smith suffered yet another fall. This ended his chances of qualifying as the top satellite rider, but he did out perform teammate Pol Espargaro once again.

Bradley Smith: “First of all I want to start by apologising to the team for the extra work that I created today with my three crashes, which were all on laps where I was really pushing. A big thanks as well to Pol’s guys who helped out to make sure both of my bikes were ready for FP4. Aside from that I have to say that we had a very strong day and I am feeling confident for the race tomorrow as we know what we can achieve. Of course it is a bit disappointing to crash twice in Q2, but I know why it happened and the fact is that I pushed a bit too hard as I knew that if everything went perfectly then I would have probably been able to get onto the front row and so for myself, it was worth a try. The first fall was a pity as I locked the front going into turn five and the fork bottomed out. I could have picked up the bike but the electronics didn’t shut down fully so I had to jump on my second Yamaha.”

“However, the front tyre on that M1 had already done 17 laps when I left the garage, so running at only 0.3 off the top time just before I fell was a bit too much! Both crashes were quick and I know that they happened because I was really at the limit. Nevertheless, I have a firm battle plan for tomorrow and I am feeling optimistic for the race after what happened in FP4. There, Jorge was behind me and didn’t make too many inroads into me and I set low 1’45 lap times as I have been for the entire weekend. I still believe a top five is a definite possibility and it is what I will be aiming for as my main ambition is to not lose many points on Dani and I have to try and stay in front of the Ducati’s. So, I intend to have a consistent race with a good start to conclude the first of the three back to back flyaway races solidly.”

MotoGP, 2015, MOTUL GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, Q2, Bradley Smith, Monster Yamaha Tech 3

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