Confidence high as Marc VDS head east
The Marc VDS Racing Team head East to contest three races in as many weekends in Japan, Malaysia and Australia, starting this week with the Japanese Grand Prix at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit.
Scott Redding heads to Japan with renewed confidence, after an impressive podium finish last time out at Aragon. The British teenager likes the technical nature of the Motegi circuit and is looking forward to matching or even bettering his fifth place finish at the 2010 Japanese Grand Prix this weekend.
Aragon was a major disappointment for Mika Kallio, with 16th position ending his run of unbroken points scoring finishes that started at the opening round in Qatar. The 29-year-old Finn is determined to make amends and break back into the top five at Motegi, a track at which he has won three times in the past but doesn't count as one of his favourites.
Opened in 1999, the 4.8km Twin Ring circuit, some 160km north of Tokyo, sits in a rural landscape and, as its name suggests, boasts not one but two tracks: a “super speedway” oval and the longer, snaking “road course”, which Redding and Kallio will be tackling this weekend.
Scott Redding #45:
“Motegi is a technical track, with a lot of places where you're really hard on the brakes, especially into the downhill corners. I know it's not popular with a lot of riders, but I quite like it. I had a good run out at Aragon, where I finished on the podium, so I'm pretty confident going into this weekend's race in Japan. Obviously I'll be keeping an eye on Mika, as he has designs on my fifth position in the championship, but the main aim at Motegi will be to repeat the success of Aragon and secure my fifth podium finish of the season.”
Mika Kallio #36:
“I've won three times in the past at Motegi, so the track obviously suits me, but it's definitely not one of my favourite circuits. It's a bit boring to ride, as it's very stop start with hard braking followed by slow corners and then hard acceleration. I had a disappointing result last time out at Aragon, where we had some problems in the race, but I'm confident that we won't have the same issues in Japan. I've already shown I have the pace to be up at the front and fighting in the top five, which is exactly where I need to be this weekend at Motegi.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“Three races in three weekends, with thousands of kilometres in between each, is a tough prospect for Scott, Mika and the team. But it's the same for everyone and I'm confident that we'll return to Europe at the end of this month with both riders having secured good results in Japan, Malaysia and Australia to consolidate their positions in the championship. Scott and Mika are both confident going into this weekend's Japanese Grand Prix. Scott was on the podium last time out and, while he claims he doesn't really like the Motegi circuit, Mika has won there on both a 125cc and 250cc machine in the past. Racing in Japan is always very different to racing in Europe, but we need to approach this weekend in the same way as every other if we are to challenge for a podium finish once again.”