Elf Marc VDS Racing Team continues Asia tour in Japan
The Elf Marc VDS Racing Team’s next stop on an intense tour of Asia and Australia takes Sam Lowes and Tony Arbolino to the Grand Prix of Japan for round 14 this weekend.
- The stop and go nature of the Mobility Resort Motegi some two hours outside of Tokyo provides a tough challenge for Lowes and Arbolino, who experienced mixed fortunes during last weekend’s historic first Indian Grand Prix.
- The Moto2 action gets underway at 950am local time on Friday, with the 19-lap race scheduled to start at 1315pm on Sunday afternoon.
/// SAM LOWES
- The Briton can’t wait to get back on track in Japan this weekend to fight for a top result after his hopes of a strong Grand Prix of India were ended on a hectic first lap following contact from another rider.
- The 33-year-old is confident he can secure his best result in Motegi to improve on an eighth place he secured back in 2015 in just his second season in Moto2.
- Lowes was still recovering from a serious left shoulder injury at last year’s Japanese Grand Prix and he withdrew as a precaution after a crash in a wet Q1 session.
“We need to show the potential we know we have”
“I’m looking forward to riding in Japan just to try and quickly put India behind us. This sport is all about results, so when they don’t come it’s tough. But I can still take a lot of positives from India, and I still managed to set the second best lap of the race even with some damage to my bike. I feel we’ve got a good base with the bike, but we need to get to Japan and show that potential we know we have. Tony had a great result in India and I’m sure I could have done as well, so as a team we are competitive and hopefully both of us can perform at a very high level this weekend.”
/// TONY ARBOLINO
- A stunning ride to second in extreme heat and humidity at the Buddh International Circuit kept the Italian right in title contention with seven of 20 rounds remaining in 2023.
- Arbolino is 39-points behind series leader Pedro Acosta and he’s eyeing more podium success this weekend in Japan after claiming top six finishes in both Moto3 and Moto2 previously in Motegi.
- The 23-year-old qualified in an excellent fourth at the Mobility Resort Motegi last year and then finished sixth after winning a good battle against current title rival Acosta.
“We need to build on the confidence gained in India”
“It was great to be back on the podium in India and now we need to build on that confidence this weekend. Our objective was to make a good start to this run of overseas races to gain some early momentum and we managed to do that. The next goal now is to continue in this way and take advantage of the positive mindset we have coming to Japan.”