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Espargaro: “We rode two laps more than race distance”

Espargaro: “We rode two laps more than race distance”

A strong race simulation leaves Pol Espargaro confident ahead of the opening round of the 2016 season.

With 113 laps completed, Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Pol Espargaro was able to complete an extensive testing regime across the three days in Qatar. The test culminated in a race simulation towards the end of the third and final day, Espargaro producing a steady flow of mid to low 1’56s and several 1’55s. This pace was comparable to that of Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) on the factory Yamaha and has the youngest Espargaro brother pleased with his work, despite still struggling for one lap speed. A best time of 1’55.882 has the satellite rider conclude the Qatar test in 11th overall and ahead of his teammate Bradley Smith.

Espargaro was one of only a few riders to complete a full race simulation, with new tyres and electronics in 2016 understanding how his bike performs towards the end of a race will offer a clear advantage in the opening rounds. The 2016 MotoGP™ World Championship season commences on the 20th of March at the same circuit.

Pol Espargaro: “I am really satisfied with what we achieved today, even though of course, there is still margin of improvement that we can make. After the issues that we had in Malaysia where we didn’t know which direction to head towards and where we were struggling with the electronics, I wasn’t really optimistic. In Phillip Island we were able to improve and I ended the test in the top ten which is very important because it is where we need to be. Here, we were still not particularly strong on a single lap, but the most important thing is that I was one of the few riders who ran a race simulation and our rhythm was very strong.

“We were also able to finalise our tyre choice and the tyre that I used was good. In fact, we rode two laps more than race distance. The only inconvenience of the simulation was the interruption because of the red flag. However, when I pitted, we didn’t touch the bike at all and when I went out again, I was able to improve my time. Actually, I rode my fastest lap after having covered the full distance, which is something that I was never able to do with Bridgestone tyres, but with Michelin, I can. Therefore, I feel very comfortable and I am excited to start the season here in Qatar. Honestly, I expect the qualifying to be tricky for us, but on Sunday I am sure we will be able to do great things."

MotoGP, 2016, QATAR MOTOGP™ OFFICIAL TEST, T3, Pol Espargaro, Monster Yamaha Tech 3

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