Redding leads the way for Marc VDS in Barcelona
Scott Redding remains quietly confident, after ending the day fourth fastest on combined times in Barcelona. Mika Kallio struggled once again to find a good feeling with the bike and, as a result, finished 10th on the timesheet after today’s two free practice sessions.
Redding tested a radically different set-up on his Kalex Moto2 machine during this morning’s 45-minute practice, but switched back to a more familiar setting after the expected improvements didn’t materialise. The 20-year-old Briton took his time finding a good rhythm this afternoon, posting his fastest time right at the end of the 45-minute second free practice.
Kallio struggled once again with the rear grip issues that have affected him the past three races, with this afternoon’s rise in temperature and subsequent drop in grip levels exacerbating the problem severely. As a result the 30-year-old Finn was unable to improve upon his time from this morning during this afternoon’s second free practice session and ended the day 10th on combined times.
Despite grip levels dropping as the track temperature rose ahead of this afternoon’s second Moto3 free practice session, Livio Loi managed to improve his lap time by more than two-tenths, to end the day 16th on combined times. More importantly the 16-year-old Belgian was within 1.68s of the fastest lap of the day, which was posted by factory KTM rider, Luis Salom.
Scott Redding #45: 4th – 1’47.538
“This morning we tried a new set-up on the bike, but the feeling wasn’t what we were expecting. We switched back to a setting closer to what we’ve run on the bike before and it was getting better as the session progressed, but then we ran out of time. This afternoon the temperature had gone up and the track felt really greasy, but the feeling with the bike and the feedback from the tyres was pretty good. It got better as the session went on, so it wasn’t too bad in the end.”
Mika Kallio #36: 10th – 1’48.148
“Again I’m struggling to get the feeling I want from the bike. We’ve had the same problem for three races now, but here it is worse than ever. This morning was pretty bad, but with the higher track temperature and less grip available this afternoon it was probably the worst it’s ever been. I need to sit down tonight with my Chief Mechanic, Naoya Kaneko, to discuss whether a switch back to the set-up we used at the start of the season is an option. As it is, the bike just doesn’t instil confidence and, without confidence, it’s not possible to push to the limit.”
Livio Loi #11: 16th – 1'53.734
“I set my fastest time three laps into this afternoon’s session, when the bike was fitted with the medium option tyre front and rear. We suspect that the medium tyres will struggle to last the race on Sunday, so most of the session we were trying the harder options tyres and I couldn’t improve my lap time any further. We will try again with the medium tyres tomorrow, maybe over a longer run, to see if there’s any chance of them lasting race distance, as the grip level is much better. Overall it’s been a pretty good first day, but we need to improve again tomorrow.”