Redding and Kallio looking to end the season on a high at Valencia
Valencia once again hosts the Moto2 season finale and after narrowly missing out on the podium last time out in Australia, Scott Redding heads to Spain determined to end his season on a high. The same is also true of Mika Kallio, who looked all set to claim a top five finish at Phillip Island until he was hit by another rider and crashed out of the race.
Redding has enjoyed his best season to date in the Moto2 World Championship, with four podium finishes securing him fifth place in the championship standings going into this weekend's final round. With just 16 points separating him from Thomas Lüthi in the championship, Redding will be going all out this weekend to steal fourth place from the Swiss rider.
Kallio secured his best result of the season at Valencia last year, finishing second and claiming his first ever podium in Moto2. The Finn, who will celebrate his 30th birthday on Thursday, has also won at Valencia in both the 125cc and 250cc classes previously.
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.
Scott Redding #45:
“This season has been a positive one for us, but it's not over yet. My fifth place in the championship is secure, but there's still an outside chance of nicking fourth from Tom Lüthi. So, for me, there is nothing to lose this weekend, which means I can go all out for the podium. The battle for the championship between Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro is finished, but both of them will be looking to win in front of their home crowd this weekend, which means they can't be discounted. But, if I can qualify up near the front and then get away with the leaders from the start of the race, then I'm quite happy to push to the limit – and beyond if necessary – to get on the podium. That's all I can do; I can't influence Tom's race, so we'll just have to see where we are championship wise after the chequered flag.”
Mika Kallio #36:
“The overseas races were hard. I was able to run the same pace as the top five but, unfortunately, I didn't manage to collect many points. It means that I go into the final race having to defend my sixth position in the championship, rather than pushing to take fifth from Scott. But I'm not thinking about the championship, only about the final race. I want to finish the season with a good result, at a track on which I've won before and where I took my first Moto2 podium last year. I'm pretty confident going into the weekend but, as we saw in Australia, anything can happen in Moto2, so hopefully we'll have luck on our side as well for the final race of the season.
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“This season has been our most successful to date, with Scott fifth and Mika sixth in the standings going into this weekend, so it would be good to end on a high with two good results in the final race. For Scott, a podium finish at Valencia is the only chance he has of stealing fourth place in the championship from Tom Lüthi, whereas Mika needs a good result if he is to defend sixth place from Bradley Smith, who is only 11 points behind him. Both riders go into this weekend with some confidence, after two good performances in Australia. Scott was unlucky to miss out on a podium finish there, whereas Mika was riding the race of his life before being taken out by another rider on the penultimate lap. I'm confident we’ll see both riders up at the front battling for a top five finish this weekend at Valencia.”