No risks for championship leaders at wet Misano
Misano, Italy – 12 September 2014: On an opening day at Misano that was marred by dismal weather, Mika Kallio mastered the wet and tricky conditions to finish sixth fastest on combined times. Tito Rabat ended the day 16th, after working to improve the wet set up on his Kalex Moto2 machine.
The rain at Misano was pretty much constant all day and the track surface, notorious for being particularly slippery when wet, claimed a number of victims during both 45-minute Moto2 free practice sessions.
Kallio struggled to find a good feeling with the bike during this morning’s free practice, but a change back to a setting closer to that used last year brought an increase in confidence for the Finn during this afternoon’s equally wet 45-minute session.
Rabat focussed on improving the set up of his Kalex Moto2 machine in both sessions today, as the 25-year-old Spaniard has struggled to find a good feeling with the bike in full wet conditions this season. The championship leader improved his lap time significantly this afternoon, despite still missing the feedback needed to instil confidence.
The Marc VDS Racing Team’s Moto3 rider, Jorge Navarro, took advantage of today’s weather to familiarise himself with the Kalex-KTM in wet conditions for the first time, at a track he has never seen before. The 18-year-old Spaniard ended the day 27th on combined times, after two sessions that saw a lot of crashes as the tricky conditions took their toll.
All three Marc VDS riders are hoping that the better weather forecast for tomorrow and Sunday does actually make an appearance.
Mika Kallio // 6th // 1’53.503
“Conditions today were difficult and there is always a risk when you ride in the wet, so it was important to test what we needed to test without crashing. So, while I had something in my pocket today, you still need to push if the tests are to have any meaning. After missing feedback from the bike this morning we switched to a setting closer to the one we used last year and there was a definite improvement this afternoon. We make up time in some places on the track, but we lose out in others, so there is still work to do if conditions remain the same tomorrow.”
Tito Rabat // 16th // 1’55.114
“Of course I didn’t want to take big risks in the conditions today, but it was important to push hard enough to test things on the bike, as we’ve had some issues in the wet that we need to address. Today the conditions were perfect for this and it’s good to have this opportunity on a Friday when we don’t have to think about qualifying. I did a lot of laps and we found some improvement, but there is still work to do if we are to be fully competitive in wet conditions.”
Jorge Navarro // 27th // 2’01.352
“Today was another day for firsts. It is my first time here at Misano and it’s the first time I’ve ridden the Kalex-KTM in wet conditions, so there was plenty to learn. For me it was a positive day, because I was constantly improving and my feeling with the bike was better with ever lap. Today was not a day to take risks, because the weather is supposed to improve for tomorrow and Sunday. Today was all about getting a feel for the bike in these conditions, which we accomplished without crashing, and everything is okay for tomorrow.”