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4 days ago
By Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

Aprilia: Lowes and Espargaro talk #QatarTest

Satisfaction despite some crashes for Noale factory riders

Rookie Sam Lowes and veteran Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) both suffered crashes on the third and final day of testing at Losail International Circuit, but both riders feel they made good progress with their Aprilia machines.

With Espargaro’s crash leaving him working on the second bike for some time, the podium finisher set a best lap of 1:55.451. Lowes’ best was a 1:56.167, concentrating on improving and getting dialed in to premier class life rather than a laptime.

Aleix Espargaro, P15: “Even if today was not the best of the three days, I am still happy with our work. At the beginning I started with a good feeling, managing to be fast even on used tyres. Maybe it was partially because of these good sensations that I pushed a bit too hard with the soft tyre, crashing while I was doing a good lap. The bike was repaired quickly, but a second crash forced me to use the other RS-GP with a less advanced engine and electronics that were not perfectly dialled in. For this reason I was unable to improve in the second part of the session, but I see the glass as half full. We have improved our pace and our level is definitely better than our standings on the time sheets show.”

Sam Lowes, P19: “It may seem strange, but just at the end of this last day, when I crashed, we found the right setup for the 2017 RS-GP to increase my confidence. We had some particular tests. We have a lot of things to try and sometimes that keeps us from focusing on pure performance. This is all part of my growth. Right now my sensations in the saddle are more important than lap times and I learned a lot even from the less positive situations. I am optimistic about the race. The work we did on the front of the bike gave me the confidence I was lacking and now the points zone, which is the goal I've set for the first race, appears to be well within our reach. We'll set up our first weekend based on what we found today - a nice starting base.”

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