Fourth for Redding on opening day at Indianapolis
Scott Redding was fourth fastest on combined times on the opening day of the Indianapolis Grand Prix, at the world famous Brickyard. Mika Kallio ended the first day 11th on the timesheet, just over half a second behind his Marc VDS teammate.
This morning's first 45-minute free practice session was held on a track drying from overnight rain and with unpredictable levels of grip in certain sections. Both Marc VDS riders opted to complete the session on the harder option rear tyres, saving the softer tyres for when track conditions improved.
After five practice sessions earlier in the day, the track conditions had improved significantly for this afternoon's free practice, allowing Redding and Kallio to start working on refining set-up and pushing for fast lap times.
Redding moved into the top ten at the halfway point in the session, before posting the fourth quickest time right at the end. Kallio was quick to put in a fast lap early in the session to go second, but dropped down the order to 11th as he struggled to maintain a good rhythm on subsequent pit exits.
The two Marc VDS riders are confident of further improvements tomorrow ahead of the all-important qualifying session, in which they are both aiming for a start on the front three rows of the grid.
Scott Redding #45: 4th – 1'44.512
“It took me a bit longer to adapt to riding a Moto2 bike again after testing the MotoGP bike during the summer break. It wasn't so much the bike itself, but more the tyres. The Ducati was really stable on the Bridgestones, but the Moto2 bike moves around a lot on the Dunlops, which takes a bit of getting used to again. But the bike felt good this afternoon, and the pace was there, so I'm pretty happy with where we are at the end of the first day. The only slight concern is tyre wear, especially on the left hand side of the rear tyre. This track is very abrasive and there was a drop off in tyre performance after just a handful of laps. It's not a big issue, but one we certainly need to keep in mind for the race on Sunday.”
Mika Kallio #36: 11th – 1'45.140
“We tried a few small things with the bike today, but it's a bit pointless spending so much time on set-up when we know the track conditions will be very different tomorrow. This track doesn't get used much and it always takes a while for the track surface to bed in when we come here. I'm a little bit annoyed with myself after this afternoon's session. My first exit was good, but I couldn't seem to find the same rhythm for the rest of the session. I knew what I needed to do, which lines I needed to take, but I just couldn't seem to get it right. The bike was up to the job this afternoon but, unfortunately, the rider wasn't. We have a few changes to make for tomorrow, to take advantage of the improved track conditions, and I'm confident we'll be up to speed for qualifying.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“I was a little concerned this morning, but the track conditions weren't ideal and both Scott and Mika stayed on the harder option rear tyre for the entire session. This afternoon both of them increased their pace as grip levels improved during the session, with Scott finishing just a few tenths off second place. I'm confident that both riders can continue to improve tomorrow, as grip becomes easier to find on a track that doesn't see much use during the rest of the season. I think it's possible for both riders to qualify on the front three rows tomorrow, so that's the goal we'll be setting them for the final timed session.”