Rabat and Miller experience four seasons in one day at Phillip Island
Phillip Island, Australia – 17 February 2016: The Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS riders, Tito Rabat and Jack Miller, completed only a limited number of laps of the Phillip Island circuit today, as intermittent rain disrupted the opening day of testing.
As is so often the case at Phillip Island, the changeable weather kept riders and teams guessing all day. Rain would soak the track but as riders exited pit lane on wet tyres the sun would come out, the wind would pick up and the track would start to rapidly dry out.
Unfortunately, with the rain returning at regular intervals the track never dried out fully until late in the afternoon, while the showers didn’t last long enough to give the riders the opportunity to test Michelin’s wet tyres on a fully wet track during the morning.
The two Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS riders got only two short runs on slick tyres late in the afternoon, with Miller jumping up to ninth on the timesheet, despite only completing six laps. Rabat ended the day 11th after managing to fit in only one flying lap in the better conditions.
Both Rabat and Miller are hopeful of an improvement in the weather for the remaining two days of testing but, while the forecast currently promises dry conditions tomorrow, more rain is expected for the third and final day of testing on Friday.
Jack Miller: 9th – 6 Laps – 1’33.992
“I’m pretty happy with today, even if the weather meant my time on the bike was limited. We had a heap of new parts to run in on the bike and we managed to get that done during the brief time the track was dry, so it looks good for tomorrow, when I hope the weather will be better. The leg was fine today; once I’m on the bike it’s really good. Okay, I can’t use the rear brake as much as I’d like to, but I can work on my riding style to compensate for that. Now we just need some better weather and a lot more laps.”
Tito Rabat: 11th – 28 Laps – 1’35.273
“We were limited with what we could do today by the weather, but it was still a positive first day. This morning I learnt a lot about how the electronics work in wet conditions, even if the track was never fully wet. The dry time was short today and I never really got one good lap, but it was a good opportunity to get the feeling with the rear hard tyre. We need dry track time more than anything, so I hope the Australian weather will be kind to us tomorrow and Friday.”