Press release previews from the 125cc and Moto2 teams ahead of the Indianapolis Grand Prix:
FTR MOTO LOOKING TO INDIANAPOLIS FOR SUCCESS
FTR MOTO goes in search of further podium finishes in the Moto2 World Championship in Sunday's 11th round of the series at the Indianapolis circuit in America.
Buckingham-based manufacturer FTR sits in third place in the Constructors World Championship with its highest placed rider, Simone Corsi, on the Ioda Racing Project M211, holding fourth place in the Riders Championship, just four points adrift of third place.
Corsi's team-mate Mattia Pasini will be looking to add to his point-scoring ride in the previous round at Brno, Czech Republic – his third finish in the points this year despite leading a race and showing potential to improve on his season-best sixth place in Holland two months ago.
Blusens-STX M211 ace Esteve Rabat returned to the top 10 in Brno with seventh place, his fifth top 10 finish of the campaign. His team-mate Yonny Hernandez will miss this week's Indianapolis race through injury and will be replaced by former 250cc GP rider and fellow Colombian Martin Cardenas.
American Kenny Noyes (FOGI/GP Tech M211) will be keen to get his 2011 points tally under way in his home race while 19-year-old American prospect J.D. Beach will replace Italian Tommaso Lorenzetti on the Aeroport de Castello M211 this weekend.
A third American rider, Jake Gagne, 17, will race under the FOGI/GP Tech banner with a wild card entry for his home grand prix. Pol Espargaro, on the HP Tuenti Speed Up M211, will be out to improve on his 16th place in Brno as team-mate, French youngster Valentin Debise, continues his search for a first Wolrd Championship point of the year.
After finishing 17th in Brno, Ratthapark Wilairot on the Thai Honda Singha SAG machine will be looking add to his points tally while team-mate Santiago Hernandez chases his first points of the year on his SAG Team machine.
"The Indianapolis race seems to have really captured the imagination with our partners in North America and we have plenty to look forward to this weekend," said FTR's Steve Bones. "The wild card and replacement riders will be keen to impress and the established riders are heading into the business end of the year in terms of Championship positions and 2012 opportunities."
Brad Binder replaces Luis Salom
Brad Binder from South Africa will replace Luis Salom in the 125cc GP of Indianapolis. Salom was declared unfit to race due to multiple fractures in his right hand. Dorna and IRTA asked RW Racing GP to give Binder a chance as replacement.
The South African is tenth in the standings of the Red Bull Rookies Cup. He won the race in Estoril. Last weekend he won a race in the South African Champion ship with eleven seconds difference.
To Binder, who had his 16th birthday just two weeks ago, Indianapolis will be his maiden Grand Prix. ,,It's going to be his debut and therefore there is no pressure at all,'' team owner Roelof Waninge explains. ,,Dorna and IRTA think it is time for Brad to get to know Grand Prix and get some experience. We are happy to help him with that. Brad is delighted to get this chance and wants to learn as much as possible.'' Binder will travel to Indianapolis with his father and will join the team on Wednesday.
RW Racing GP expects to welcome back Luis Salom in Misano.
For more information on Brad Binder please follow this link
Grand Prix of Indianapolis
Indianapolis (Usa), August 26th – 28th , 2011
Simone Grotzkyj Giorgi (#15)
Taylor Mackenzie (#17)
Giulian Pedone (#30)
Indianapolis offers to the motorcycling World Championship the only event on North-American soil. It is the most peculiar of the season – the layout, 4.218 metres long, makes use of a short part of the Speedway, the oval which usually is competition field for Indycar single-seaters and Nascar stock-cars. The remaining part – the longest - has been marked out inside the oval, and it is used only for the motorbike competitions. Recently it has been resurfaced.
Alessandro Tonelli (Technical Director): "A new tarmac means better grip and less bumps. We prepared this event working to improve the maximum speed of our Aprilias. As far as the set-up is concerned, it will be necessary to verify the quality of the new asphalt, and how it works. Indy is an important GP for every rider, as the circuit made history in the States' motor racing. For Giulian it is even more important than others. Not only he enters it for the first time, but his mother is from Usa, and he considers this as his home Grand Prix".
PIRRO AND TAKAHASHI LOOKING TO BURY BRNO MEMORIES AT INDIANAPOLIS
A disappointing weekend at Brno left Team Gresini Moto2 feeling bitter but resolute, as they target a positive weekend and a turnaround in results at Indianapolis. The riders are determined to return to the front of the Moto2 field and now that in order to do so they must work hard from the first session at the 'Brickyard.' Last year Team Gresini celebrated victory at this historic racetrack with Toni Elias and are hopeful the positive energy from that memory can invigorate their challenge this weekend.
Yuki Takahashi "I would like a magic wand to come and take away the disappointment from Brno but it is down to us to work hard and recover that winning spirit we need to get us back to the front. It will take a lot of effort from everybody in the team as well as the correct technical decisions that can bring back the confidence and feeling we had at the start of the season. We have the potential to do it and I am convinced it will happen at Indianapolis. "
Michele Pirro "When I think about Brno I automatically feel bitter but we have to move forward with optimism and hard work. Together with the team we will try our best to pick up the pieces and put together a competitive package again. Indianapolis is an opportunity to turn the page and ensure that a dark weekend in the Czech Republic becomes a distant memory as soon as possible."
Fausto Gresini "Last year at Indianapolis we won the race with Toni Elias and I would really like us to rediscover the determination and motivation to be frontrunners in the Moto2 class. I have confidence in the team and the riders and I am sure that we will find the right way forward this weekend. We have to work hard together and have faith in our capabilities because our potential certainly was not accurately reflected in the Czech Republic."
MAHINDRA CREW HOPES FOR AN EVEN BETTER PERFORMANCE AT INDY
23 August, 2011: Fresh off a strong double points result at Brno, the Mahindra boys travel to the USA this week for the Indianapolis GP with their heads and their hopes held high.
The Czech Republic GP gave the Indian 125cc team a second double score in its first season in the MotoGP series, the pinnacle of two-wheel racing. English rider Danny Webb (20) was knocking on the door of the top ten, with a strong 12th place; German team-mate Marcel Schrötter (18) was close behind in a fighting 14th.
With a weekend off to draw breath before the visit to the USA, the team continues the steady technical progress that has marked the Mahindra's first season. It is the only machine on the 125 grid with both engine and chassis made by the team.
The red-and-silver single-cylinder two-stroke has improved in performance and handling race by race; while its two riders have also adapted so they can explore the outer limits of speed and grip.
Double points at Brno were good, said team manager Nicola Casadei, but not enough. "The riders qualified in 22nd and 23rd. If they were higher on the grid, the bike is good enough now for strong top-ten results. We need to help them qualify better."
The Indianapolis GP is the 11th of 17 rounds in the 125cc World Championship. The race is run at the classic banked circuit of the historic Indy 500 car race, but the bikes share only a section of the start-finish straight. The GP circuit peels off to a looping 2.620-mile (4.216-km) infield circuit, fully resurfaced for this year's race. The best lap for a 125 set an average of 87.2 mph (140.4 km/h), but with the bumps removed speeds are expected to rise for 2011.
I can't wait. It's a good track – not my favourite, but I've gone well there in the past. Last year I was sixth, and 11th in '09. With both of us in the points at Brno, it shows the bike is going well. It should be mega.
I am looking forward to it. It's only my second visit to the USA. Last year I crashed, but I like the track, and the race had been going not so bad. I hope we can sort our practice problems. I'll push from the start to get a good grid position, and then see what happens.
NICO TEROL HOPING FOR CHANGE OF FORTUNE AT INDY
BANKIA Aspar rider out for victory hat-trick at talismanic circuit
The 125cc World Championship make their first and only trip 'over the pond' for the season this week as the legendary Indianapolis circuit plays host to round eleven of the campaign. The circuit, which lies inside the world-famous oval, used to feature three different kinds of tarmac but it has been completely resurfaced for this year, which should see lap times tumble in the smaller classes. With another race back in Europe, at Misano, next weekend this is a crucial stage of the season for the title contenders, especially with the points gap at the top of the standings having been significantly reduced in recent weeks.
BANKIA Aspar rider Nico Terol remains the man at the top but he travels to Indianpolis looking for a major turnaround in fortunes. The Spaniard celebrated his first ever Grand Prix victory at this circuit back in 2008 and repeated the feat last year. A similar result on Sunday would be just the tonic, having been forced out of the race lead at Brno due to a mechanical problem. Far from losing faith, Nico is already looking forward to putting together another assault on the top step of the podium at Indy. His team-mate Héctor Faubel faces his own challenges this weekend as he rides a 125 at the historic circuit for the first time. Having narrowly missed out on the podium in the Czech Republic, the experienced Spaniard has shown he is back to full fitness following an intestinal illness during the summer and ready to battle with the frontrunners once more. Team youngster Adrián Martín is also hoping for a change in fortune after crashing out of the last two races.
Nico Terol: "Going back to the scene of my first win brings back a lot of good memories. I love the circuit and the country so I enjoy every moment of being out there. I get a really good feeling from the atmosphere there and America is a place I would really like to discover more of. They have relaid the track this year, which I think was necessary because there were a lot of bumps, and that is something else to look forward to. At Brno we did a great job and I was fighting for the win when I broke down. These things happen and we have to turn our frustration into motivation for the next one. I spent a lot of time last week training on my bicycle and relaxing with friends, so I will arrive in Indianapolis with my batteries fully charged and ready to fight for the top step of the podium and the championship lead, especially after what happened in the last race."
Héctor Faubel: "I have never ridden a 125 at Indianapolis so it may be more difficult for me to get my references than at other circuits but I do like the track and I had one of my best races in the Moto2 class there last year, even though I crashed. I qualified second and was running third when I crashed. One of the main issues there was the track surface but they have relaid it so it should be much better and that could see closer lap times. I was able to train harder last week with two sessions a day and I am feeling much better."
Adrián Martín: "My aim for Indianapolis is to keep working hard. Even though we've been followed by some bad luck over the past couple of races we will stick at it and hopefully get into a situation where I am not riding on the limit as much and taking risks. I want to get back to the front and to enjoy myself riding, which is the best way for us to find our form again."
SIMÓN AND TORRES TARGET IMPROVED FORM AT INDY
Julián eager to finish a race for the first time since his injury as Jordi aims for first points
The capacity of the Moto2 class to surprise and entertain was once again in evidence last time out at Brno, where Andrea Iannone got the better of the favourites Stefan Bradl and Marc Márquez, and although the German and the Spaniard are clear at the top of the championship there is plenty of further opportunity for an upset with seven races still remaining. The eleventh round of the season sees the intermediate category riders 'crossing the pond' for the first time this year although it will be a fleeting visit as the Indianapolis Grand Prix is followed within a week by round twelve in San Marino. The flat, 4km layout of the historic circuit has been relaid in time for this weekend and will no doubt provide the perfect battleground for the latest chapter in the short history of Moto2.
MAPFRE Aspar riders Julián Simón and Jordi Torres have different aims this weekend, with the former continuing his return to fitness and the latter still adapting to life as a Grand Prix rider. Julián came back from a broken leg only to crash out of the last two races and even though he has a slight infection in his leg the injury is healing and his shoulder has also improved after the Brno fall. Having finished second at Indianapolis last year the Spaniard is keen to work hard for more success there this weekend. Jordi faces the challenge of learning another circuit this weekend as well as continuing his adaptation to the Moto2 machine. His target is to continue with the progress he has made so far and be involved in the battle for points on Sunday.
Julián Simón: "Indianapolis is a very special circuit to me. Last year I scored my first pole position in Moto2 and I finished second in a great race. I think this could be the race to turn around our fortunes. It should be less stressful for my right leg because the majority of corners are to the left. The main priority for us is to make it to the finish. We haven't had much luck since I came back from injury - we have set some fantastic lap times in practice but for one reason or another not managed to finish in Germany and the Czech Republic. We will be working hard to fulfil the potential we have shown recently though by carrying it through to the chequered flag, which will be important for everybody's confidence after two tough weekends. I have worked hard over the last couple of weeks on my recovery and even though the leg is still not 100% because of the infection and my shoulder is still quite painful I will be giving it my all."
Jordi Torres: "It is pretty impressive to see everything shipped out on a long haul like this and as a rider you feel obligated to do your part by fighting for a good result, which for me means points. The motivation is there to keep working as hard as I have up to now and try to take that little extra step in the race that will lift us into the points. I have learnt a lot in the last few races and even though I am a rookie the team have helped me a lot and this is improving me as a rider. I have been training hard over the last few days and spent some time on two wheels, as well as watching videos to get an idea of what Indianapolis is like."
Moto2 Dunlop Indianapolis preview
Dunlop heads to America's most-famed motor racing location for the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix on August 26-28, the eleventh round of the 2011 Moto2 Championship.
Indianapolis – world renowned for the Indianapolis 500 Indycar race – features an anti-clockwise circuit made up of sections of the banked oval track combined with an infield section.
Despite its fame for four wheeled motorsport, Indianapolis also has a strong two wheel history, with the first motorsport race taking part at the venue being a motorcycle race in 1909.
MotoGP has raced at the circuit since 2008, and the banked turns and the potential high track temperatures in which they can bake provides a rear test for the tyre manufacturer's art.
Dunlop will bring the front tyre allocation of the 717 hard compound which has been used at all rounds so far this year, and the slightly harder medium compound of the 302, which replaced the 753 medium from the Sachsenring round onwards.
In response to the circuit's characteristics, Dunlop will bring the dual compound W919 rear tyre as well as the 3868 compound.
Ten left-hand corners and six right-handers mean more work for the left hand side of the tyre, so the W919 features a harder compound on the left and softer compound on the right - allowing riders to enjoy the best of both worlds: Long-lasting endurance on the frequently-used left, plus instant grip on the lesser used right.
"This year, we will have available the same two compound fronts (302 and 717), due to both being race options last year," explains Dunlop Motorsport's Moto2 co-ordinator, Clinton Howe.
"The rear options have changed since last year and we have gone from the 6868 and 6838 compound options to the W919 dual and 3868. We hope these will improve on last year's rear tyre performance.
"Last year we saw very high track temperatures which had a detrimental effect on the rear tyres' grip levels, however tyre wear and consistency were very good with race winner Toni Elias setting his best time on the last lap of the race.
"The track surface was different in three parts which made bike set up critical, especially with some banking in some corners and negative camber in others.
"We have the added excitement of a new track surface from turn 5 to turn 11 this year, so it is a little bit of an unknown. Feedback from riders who have tested already on the new surface is that it's very abrasive compared to last year."
The Indianapolis round of the Moto2 world championships starts with practice on Friday 26 August, followed by qualifying on Saturday and then the race at 12:15 local time on Sunday.
Moto2 championship fight continues at Indy
The two-man fight to succeed Elias as the Moto2 World Champion was briefly interrupted in Brno. The race was tightly fought to the flag among four riders. Championship leader Stefan Bradl (Viessmann Kiefer Racing, Kalex) held the lead until being caught and passed by Andrea Iannone (Speed Master, Suter) on the 13th of 20 laps, with Marc Marquez (Team CaixaCatalunya Repsol, Suter) and Alex de Angelis (JiR Moto2, Motobi) part of the fighting foursome. Bradl and Iannone swapped the lead until the penultimate lap when Marquez took the point for the first time. But Iannone wouldn't be denied and earned his second victory of 2011 with a last lap pass. Marquez was second, Bradl third and de Angelis fourth, the quartet covered by less than a second.
By finishing second to Bradl's third, Marquez took four more points off the German's championship lead, though it remains a robust 43 points, 183 to 140, with seven races remaining. De Angelis moved into third in the championship by coming fourth.
Neither of the title hopefuls had any success here last year. Bradl was taken out on the fourth lap of the Moto2 race while Marquez crashed his 125 with a 2.64s lead on the ninth of 23 laps.
Moto2 RIDER QUOTES
Viessmann Kiefer Racing, Kalex rider Stefan Bradl says:
"I'm happy going to Indianapolis. The atmosphere is fantastic and it's already something special riding on this legendary circuit. It's not only the environment I like, but also I like the layout of the track. I'm curious to see how the new asphalt works. As we are currently on form, it will be an exciting weekend and I'll try my best. My best result is third in the 125cc class in 2008, so still one or two places to improve."
Team CaixaCatalunya Repsol, Suter rider Marc Marquez says:
"The Czech Republic Grand Prix was an important race after the summer break —it is a circuit where we had always had trouble— and it was fun, very competitive and we showed a good level, so we get to Indianapolis eager to fight. Moreover, we get to one of the countries where I like to ride, because the atmosphere there is very special. It is an unusual track, completely flat, with lots of bumps and with many changes of surface. We will see how it goes with the new tarmac, because it is something we have to take into account. With the 125cc it was not bad, it is a fun track and you have to take the corners properly to be able to chain one after another without losing time."
New crew chief for Anthony West
Warren Willing signs up for MZ Racing Team
Warren Willing has signed up for Germany's MZ Racing Team. The Australian technician, who contributed to Wayne Rainey's three consecutive 500 cc world titles on Yamaha between 1990 and 1992 and who also played a key role when Kenny Roberts jr. clinched the 500 cc title in 2000 on Suzuki, will join MZ's Moto2 team at the Grand Prix of Indianapolis this upcoming weekend (26th to 28th of August) as the new crew chief of Anthony West. In recent races, MZ CEO Martin Wimmer himself had temporarily filled this position, but will now stay back in MZ's headquarters for the strategic planning of the company's future.
"For the next few weeks, I need to be back home at the company, where we will shape the future of MZ. At the same time, Anthony West's results were just not good enough in dry conditions, so we needed to take action within the team", said Wimmer. "To find an experienced technician with very special skills on the chassis side was the obvious solution. When we found out that Warren, who has a world-wide reputation in this field, was available, we didn't hesitate."
In his own racing career, Wimmer crossed paths with Willing only once, when he rode the prestigious 8-hours of Suzuka alongside with Australian Kevin Magee back in 1987 and steered his factory Yamaha to a triumphant victory.
But altogether, Warren Willing's career in motorcycle racing spans more than four centuries. Willing, who is now 59 years old, started 1970 as a racer in national competitions in Australia and New Zealand before moving up to the 750 cc world championship and the famous 200 miles of Daytona. In an accident at Northern Ireland in 1979, Willing suffered severe leg injuries and was forced to retire from racing.
Two years later, his second career started as a team manager and technician. His biggest success was the triple 500 cc crown of Wayne Rainey in 1990, 1991 and 1992, when he worked as a crew chief in the team of "King" Kenny Roberts, who had scored three consecutive 500 cc titles himself a decade prior to Rainey. In 2000, Willing was one of the key technicians within the Suzuki factory team, leading King Kenny's son Kenny Roberts junior to the 500 crown. From 2004 on, Willing worked as a consultant and chassis constructor for KTM in the 125 cc, 250 cc and MotoGP category.
MARC VDS HEAD TO THE BRICKYARD
The Marc VDS Racing Team heads over the Atlantic to the United States, for this weekend's Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix at the world famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
It was at Indianapolis just 12 months ago that Scott Redding took his first podium finish in the Moto2 class, finishing third in the race behind Toni Elias, who went on to win the championship, and the then reigning 125cc World Champion Julian Simon. The podium came after a difficult start to the season for Redding, who finds himself in a similar situation this year.
Redding heads to Indianapolis off the back of a difficult weekend at Brno. Consistently fast during practice at the Czech Republic circuit, the 18-year-old British rider struggled with tyre issues that meant he was unable to match his practice pace in the race. Despite the problems in Brno, Redding heads to the United States confident that Indianapolis will prove a happier hunting ground this weekend.
A hard fought 13th place at Brno, after battling his way through the field from 30th on the grid, means that Mika Kallio heads for Indianapolis more confident than ever with his Suter MMXI machine. The Marc VDS rider worked hard with his crew to overcome major chatter problems at Brno; work that the Finn is hopeful will pay dividends this weekend, as he looks for a top ten finish at Indianapolis.
With more than 250,000 seats in the grandstands the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the biggest permanent sporting arena in the world, but the circuit has been criticised in the past for the bumpy and patchy nature of the MotoGP track, which runs inside the world famous oval. The track should, however, be much improved this year, following extensive resurfacing work over the winter months.
Scott Redding #45:
"Brno was disappointing, because I'd been fast all through practice but just had no front grip in the race. It was a big problem and one that we need to solve at Indianapolis if we are to try and repeat the podium of last season. A lot of riders don't like the Indianapolis track and, while I wouldn't say it's one of my favourites, I certainly enjoyed racing and finishing on the podium there 12 months ago! I'm looking forward to the weekend ahead and I hope we can leave Indy with a good result, both for me and for the team."
Mika Kallio #36:
"13th position wasn't what we were looking for at Brno, but after the chatter problems we had for most of the weekend I was more or less happy to collect the points. This weekend we need to solve any problems before qualifying, as we've seen so many times this season already that a good grid position makes a good race much easier. I'm not a big fan of the Indianapolis circuit. In the past the bumps and the three or four different types of asphalt have made finding a good feeling difficult, but hopefully it will be better now the track has been completely resurfaced. If all goes well this weekend then a top ten finish is a realistic goal."
Michael Bartholemy: Team Manager
"Indianapolis proved to be the turning point for Scott last year, with the podium finish boosting his confidence and setting him up for a strong finish to his debut Moto2 season. He arrives at IMS this time in a similar situation to last year, having had a difficult start to the 2011 season, so I hope we will see the same again this time around. Mika put in a solid performance last time out in Brno, battling his way through the field from 30th to 13th after working to overcome problems with the bike. I know he's aiming for a top ten finish this weekend and I have every confidence in his ability to achieve this."