Double top 10 for ELF Marc VDS duo in positive start to Italian GP

Double top 10 for ELF Marc VDS duo in positive start to Italian GP

Filip Salac had one of his best Fridays to date this year as he finished P1 in 7th, while team-mate Tony Arbolino showed great promise in 9th.

  • The stunning setting of Mugello staged the first day of the Italian Grand Prix. There were damp patches on track in FP. And a brief lunchtime shower thankfully didn’t affecting the Moto2 class for FP and Practice 1 with Elf Marc VDS Racing Team riders Tony Arbolino and Filip Salac enjoying two largely dry sessions.
  • The action at the scenic Tuscan venue outside Florence starts on Saturday at 9:25 for Practice 2 before qualifying gets underway at 13.45 local time.

/// TONY ARBOLINO, 9th – 1’51.248

  • After showing podium pace in Barcelona, Tony flew out of the traps on Friday at his home track, showing competitive speed from midway through the session to end the morning 3rd.
  • After experimenting with a few set-up changes at the start of P1, Arbolino was pleased with his potential over a single flying lap, as well as over longer runs. He and his crew are now focussed on improving his speed through the track’s second sector for Saturday.

“We have the pace for the race on Sunday”

“It was a good morning and we then moved one or two things with the setting. It didn’t quite work as we hoped as I couldn’t quite catch the good lines. What we tried was the opposite of that. Anyway, we made a few other changes and I feel quite fast and I think we have the pace for the race on Sunday. With a new tyre I feel like I’ve improved a lot from last week in Catalunya. I think I’m a lot closer. For example, in the last two sectors I’m losing nothing to the top guys. Sector 2 is where I’m losing more so we need to look at improving there. We need to be focussed on qualifying on the front two rows tomorrow. If we can do that, I’m confident of enjoying a good race here.”

/// FILIP SALAC, 7th – 1’51.064

  • Filip and his crew tried a new setting in Free Practice in the morning, which wasn’t to the Czech rider’s liking, as he placed 19th.
  • Yet the 22-year old reverted to his base setting for the afternoon and immediately felt competitive. After a strong late time-attack, Filip was just 0.2s off the fastest time of the day and felt there was more to come.

“We were just 0.2s from the fastest guys”

“In the morning session the conditions felt a little tricky. Also, we tried a different setting on the bike to see if we could find some positives but I wasn’t happy with it. For the second session we came back to what we were using before and from the first lap my confidence returned. It felt like I was riding my bike again. Then when we put new tyres toward the end of the afternoon, I tried to follow some riders, but to be honest, they were slowing me down. So, the confidence is there. We were just 0.2s from the fastest guys, which I think is the smallest gap to the leader all year. I feel very good on the bike and very competitive so let’s take this good feeling into qualifying tomorrow.”