Productive Jerez test for Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS
Jerez, Spain – 4 March 2016: The first official Moto2 test of 2016 proved a productive one for Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS riders Álex Márquez and Franco Morbidelli, both of whom completed an extensive test program over the course of three days at Jerez.
Márquez declared himself satisfied with the test, despite being hampered on the bike by the left wrist he fractured less than two weeks ago. The 19-year-old was forced to limit the number of laps each day, but still managed to exceed his target lap time and complete the full test program.
The Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider focussed mainly on refining the suspension set up in Jerez, running back to back comparisons of various front fork and rear shock settings, with positive results. Márquez now heads to the second and final official test in Qatar with a better understanding of the 2016 Kalex and confident the wrist injury will be much improved with the additional recovery time.
For Morbidelli the three days at Jerez was an opportunity to continue the familiarisation process, both with the Kalex Moto2 machine he’ll campaign in Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS colours this season and his new crew.
The 21-year-old Italian made constant progress over the course of the test, posting his fastest ever lap of the Jerez circuit on the second of the three days, as well as working his way through an extensive test and evaluation program. Morbidelli leaves Jerez satisfied with his race pace, but determined to improve his speed over a single flying lap during the next test in Qatar.
Morbidelli and Márquez will now head from Jerez to Madrid for the official launch of the Estrella Galicia 0,0 racing program, which takes place on Monday 7th March at the Casa Del Lector in Madrid’s Matadero complex, before heading back to Qatar for the final preseason test of 2016.
Álex Márquez: 15th – 1’42.953
“To be able to ride here at Jerez with a reasonable pace just one week after the surgery on my wrist is like a win for us. In some areas the wrist was definitely an issue, but over the three days we’ve tried out many things that are so important before we head to Qatar. Now we have a clear idea of the direction we need to take with the bike. At the Qatar test I expect the wrist to be better; maybe still not 100% but at least good enough to allow me to push harder for a lap time. I’m not happy, because I wanted to go faster and be closer to the top of the timesheet, but given the injury I think we’ve done a really good job here and now I’m even more motivated for Qatar.”
Franco Morbidelli: 18th – 1’43.155
“We’ve tested a lot of different things over the three days, amassing a lot of data that we can use to improve the bike further ahead of the next test. Most important for me was the improvement; I set my fastest ever lap of Jerez yesterday, so we have definitely progressed and I’m happy about that. Now my pace over the longer runs is acceptable, but we still need to work to find more speed for those one-off fast laps in qualifying, because starting from near the front of the grid is critical in Moto2. This is something we will focus on at the next test in Qatar.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“While Álex was unable to do as many laps as he maybe wanted to because of his injured wrist, his lap time was good and the work that he’s done here on suspension settings will stand him in good stead during the next test in Qatar. It was good to see that Franco’s confidence in both the bike and what his crew are telling him increasing each day and his lap times improving significantly as a result. There is still work to be done to get him closer to the guys at the top of the timesheet, but he made a big step here in Jerez. While it’s true that we’re not used to being so far down the timesheet, I think we will see a big improvement from both riders in Qatar, as Franco’s confidence continues to increase and Álex’s wrist improves.”