Kallio targets podium after qualifying strongly in Brno
Mika Kallio has his sights set firmly on the podium in tomorrow’s Czech Moto2 Grand Prix, after qualifying in fourth position this afternoon at Brno. Scott Redding has endured a difficult weekend so far at Brno, with set-up issues leaving him only 13th on the grid after qualifying.
Kallio has been consistently fast all weekend at Brno, a track that the 30-year-old Finn rates as one of his favourites, and one at which he’s finished on the podium previously. The Marc VDS rider went into today’s 45-minute qualifying sessions looking for a front row start in tomorrow’s race, but missed out by the narrowest of margins and will start from the head of the second row.
Redding and his crew have tried a number of set-up changes to eliminate the front-end chatter and lack of rear grip that has plagued the 20-year-old Briton, but to no avail. Despite qualifying only 13th, his worst qualifying performance since the 2012 German Grand Prix, Redding remains upbeat and confident that his crew can find something in warm up ahead of the race tomorrow.
Mika Kallio #36: 4th – 2’02.658
“I’m happy enough with qualifying, despite just missing out on the front row. We came here with a new plan for practice and qualifying, which has worked well. I’ve pushed on in every session, passing slower riders immediately, riding my own pace and improving my rhythm. As a result I’ve been one of the most consistently fast riders on track all weekend, which is good for the race. The bike is good, I’m happy with both tyre options, so there’s no reason why I can’t push for a podium, and maybe even the win, in tomorrow’s race.”
Scott Redding #45: 13th – 2’02.996
“In every session so far I’ve been struggling with front-end chatter into the turns and then no rear grip when I get on the gas on corner exit. We’ve modified the set-up to try and improve things but, unusually for the Kalex, the difference is barely noticeable, even when the changes are quite big. We need to find something for warm up tomorrow, that’s for sure. We know it’s possible, because we saw in qualifying that a couple of riders suddenly solved a similar issue, but now we need to find the solution for ourselves. Whatever happens in warm up, starting from the fifth row of the grid tomorrow means the race is going to be tough. I need the points to protect my lead in the championship, and that will be my priority here at Brno.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“Mika is always fast here at Brno. He likes the track, the layout suits his ultra-smooth riding style and he’s been consistently quick all weekend. It’s a shame for him that he missed out on the front row start he was looking for, but second row is good enough to give him a chance to fight for a podium finish tomorrow. For the first time this season Scott has struggled to find a good feeling with the bike in free practice. We need to look closely at the data tonight to see if we can find something for warm-up tomorrow, because even a small improvement could be critical. The good thing is that Scott remains positive and confident that, with a little help from his crew, he can secure a good result tomorrow.”