Marc VDS trio looking to end the season on a high at Valencia
The Circuito de la Comunitat Valenciana once again plays host to the MotoGP season finale and this weekend all three Marc VDS riders head to Spain looking to end 2013 on a high.
The Valencia circuit is one that has been kind to Mika Kallio in the past. The 30-year-old Finn has won there twice before, once in the 125cc class and once on a 250cc machine, as well as taking his first Moto2 podium when he finished second in the final race of the 2011 season. Kallio was also second last time out in Japan and heads to Spain determined to add another race win to his victory earlier in the year at Brno.
The innocent victim of an opening lap crash last time out in Japan, Scott Redding saw his championship hopes dashed as arch-rival, Pol Espargaro, took the race win and the 2013 Moto2 title. The 20-year-old Briton is determined to mark his last appearance for the Marc VDS Racing Team with a good result, in what will be his final outing in the Moto2 class this weekend in Valencia.
Having had to learn three new tracks in as many weekends in Malaysia, Australia and Japan, Livio Loi returns this weekend to a circuit he knows well, having finished second in the final Moto3 Spanish Championship race at Valencia 12 months ago. The 16-year-old Belgian secured his best result of the season with 12th last time out in Japan, but heads to Valencia determined to break into the top ten for the first time.
The Valencia circuit is relatively slow-speed, and features a unique layout that was designed with the spectator in mind, as fans enjoy an unrestricted view of almost the entire track from any of the massive grandstands that ring the circuit.
The 14 turns, nine of which are to the left and five to the right, are tightly packed together, meaning that the riders spend most of the lap either cornering or changing direction. This requires a bike set-up to turn quickly, combined with tyres that can withstand the stress of almost constant cornering over full race distance.
Mika Kallio #36
“Valencia is a little bit like Motegi for me; it’s not one of my favourite tracks, but it’s one where I’ve had some good results in the past. The overseas races generally went quite well for me, building confidence throughout to end the trip with second at Motegi. I think we have a good base set-up for Valencia, as we tested there in the winter, so it would be good to end the season on the podium. Like I said in Japan, I wasn’t so happy to finish second there because I expected more, and I head to Valencia with the same expectation.”
Scott Redding #45 // @Reddingpower
“I was pretty banged up in the Motegi crash, so it’s been all about recovery since I got back home. The swelling on my lower back and right elbow means I haven’t been able to do any training since Japan, but both have improved over the last few days, so I should be good by the time I get to Valencia. This weekend will be my final race in Moto2 and my last appearance for the Marc VDS Racing Team, so I’m keen to finish the season with a good result at Valencia.”
Livio Loi #11 // @LivioLoi
“Despite all the issues with the weather in Japan, a track that was new to me, I came away with my best result of the season with 12th. I was unlucky to miss out on my first top ten finish, but when you qualify 25th the leading group don’t hang around waiting for you while you work your way through the field. This is something I need to avoid this weekend in Valencia, by qualifying higher up the grid. If I don’t have to spend the first half of the race fighting my way up through the field, then a top ten finish to round out the season is a realistic goal for me.”