Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after Sunday's races at Mugello:
Top 10 for Karel Hanika as Jack Miller crashes out
Red Bull KTM Ajo’s World Championship leader crashes on final lap of Italian Grand Prix. Karel Hanika equals his best result of the year with tenth.
06/01/2014 - Mugello Circuit , Italy
Red Bull KTM Ajo’s two riders had contrasting races at round six of the Moto3 World Championship, held at Mugello on Sunday morning. Jack Miller failed to finish the race, after leading for several laps. The Australian crashed out on the final lap, DNFing for the first time in 2014. Teammate, Karel Hanika again scored points in the series, taking tenth and equalling the best result of his rookie season so far.
A hard Moto3 race delighted the fans at the beautiful Tuscan circuit. Miller started strong, pushing from the opening lap as part of a group which included up to 16 riders. Hanika had early problems, dropping eight places on the first lap. As the race progressed, the leading pack reduced in numbers and there were some spectacular passes every time they reached Turn 1.
Thirteen riders kept up the pace to the final stages of the race, including Hanika. He would only lose touch on the last three laps, but would cross the line in tenth place –just 5 seconds behind race winner Romano Fenati. On the very last lap, Miller was unfortunate and suffered a crash at Turn 12, leaving him unable to complete the Italian Grand Prix.
With the first six Grands Prix of the year finished, Jack Miller still leads the overall standings with 104 points. He is 5 clear of second-placed Romano Fenati. Red Bull KTM Ajo rookie Hanika added 6 points to his tally today, putting him seventeenth with a total of 14.
8 JACK MILLER
"There was a moment in which I was in third and fighting for second on the last lap. Masbou overtook me on the corner and I had to pass him on the straight. It was hard to close off the line on the first corner, because there were so many people behind me. I went in eighth, I think. It was a great battle. I tried to regain some places on the final lap, but when I went into Turn 12, Oliveira blocked me off. Unfortunately I touched his rear wheel and I had to pick the bike up. Then Marquez clipped me from behind. It was completely my mistake -a rookie mistake. I was unlucky with the overtaking, because I thought I had room and that it was the right move to make.
Now we have to accept it, learn from this and improve in Catalonia. I'm disappointed, but we still have a 5-point lead in the overall standings. We have to work and work to come back stronger in Catalonia."
98 KAREL HANIKA
"The truth is that I made a pretty good start, but on the first corner someone touched me and I lost six or seven positions. At the exit of Turn 3, I received another knock, so I wanted to be careful -bearing in mind what happened in Argentina. From that moment on, the race pace was very good, and I stuck with the first group. On the final laps I made a mistake on a corner and lost the pack completely, which was a shame. We have to improve and learn how to take these kinds of corners, and at the next race we'll see what happens."
Rins podiums, Marquez crashes
Alex Rins just misses out on victory and places third. Teammate Alex Marquez suffers a crash after contact with rival on final lap.
The Repsol Moto3 riders experienced mixed fortunes at Mugello on raceday, where a long straight usually results in a group contest. Today’s GP was no exception, as the race began with up to 13 riders in the lead group early on, before the pack was reduced to 10 after a series of crashes and mechanical issues. The fight for the win went down to the final lap; Rins took third and another 16 points for his tally, whilst Marquez suffered disappointment when Miller and Bastianini’s collision took him out.
Rins quickly took the lead off the start line, with Marquez sixth. Alongside them, the extensive group rapidly managed to break away from the rest of the field. Amongst the riders at the front were World Championship leader Jack Miller, home rider Romano Fenati, Kornfeil, Masbou, McPhee, Bastianini and Viñales.
As the laps went by, constant overtaking moves changed up the order. By the final lap, these passes became even more daring. Rins occupied a spot at the front and avoided the problems present at the back of the pack, but Marquez was further behind and was unable to avoid Miller and Bastianini’s incident at Turn 12. Following the race, Marquez underwent medical examination to rule out any serious injury –his wounds limited to several bruises.
Rins fought for the victory, entering the home straight in the lead. Thanks to the slipstream strategy of Fenati, the Italian would take the win, with Viñales second and Rins relegated to third. The Spaniard’s 16 points put him third in the overall standings –17 behind leader Miller. Alex Marquez is sixth, 44 points from the top. Both Rins and Marquez will be testing with their team this coming Tuesday, June 3rd.
Alex Rins 3rd at 0.011 sec.
"It was a very slow race with many passes. At first, Fenati, Miller, Marquez and I tried to break away from the group, but some younger riders lacking in experience at leading races slowed us down a bit. We finished third in the end and we are a little sad about that, because I knew that if I got out of the final corner in the lead, I would not win. Fenati was cleverer than us this time. With Miller crashing out, we have gained a little ground in the standings, but there is still a long way to go. In two days time we will have some testing here at Mugelllo, so we will be raring to go at Montmelo."
Álex Márquez - fall
"Despite the crash, I can leave Italy feeling good about our performance. I think we have taken a major step forward compared to at other Grands Prix and here we were very competitive, both in practice, the warmup and the race. In the end we had bad luck, because on the last lap everyone fights to gain places and sometimes they overreach themselves. But this is racing and at Montmelo I will try to do well in front of the home fans. The positive is that we have not lost ground on the series leader, who was the one who caused the crash. Now we will try to forget this and keep fighting for the podium at every circuit, to try to get a victory as soon as possible."
Niklas Ajo takes personal best result in the World Championship with fifth
Finn claims best ever finish at Grand Prix of Italy, taking the best result for a Husqvarna rider so far in 2014 in the process. Danny Kent fights back to score a point.
06/01/2014 - Mugello Circuit, Italy
The Husqvarna riders both made raceday comebacks on a sunny day at Mugello. Niklas Ajo achieved the best result of his career, finishing fifth in one of the most closely-fought races in recent years. His final position was the best for a Husqvarna rider so far this season. Danny Kent crossed the finish line in fifteenth, after gaining 11 places. With this result, both riders hold 27 points in the overall standings of the Moto3 World Championship, occupying eleventh and twelfth place, respectively.
Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo rider had the best race to date of his four-season stint in the World Championship. The Finn, who started from 15th after a difficult qualifying session, stuck with the frontrunners from the start –riding amongst the 16 riders who made up the group. In the second part of the race he began to overtake rivals and was in a position to fight for the podium on the final sector of the final lap. Niklas Ajo eventually crossed the finish line 0.260s behind racewinner Romano Fenati.
Fellow Husqvarna man Danny Kent also put on a great show on Sunday. The Briton, suffering from sickness, started from the ninth row of the grid and staged a magnificent comeback to gain 11 places. The Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo rider added a further point to his tally for the year with fifteenth place, and has taken points at every race thus far in 2014.
The next round of the Moto3 World Championship will take place on June 15th at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
52 DANNY KENT
"We knew it would be difficult to have a good race after the way the qualifying session went, with us starting from 26th on the grid. Also, I’m not feeling quite right. From the warmup onwards I felt a lack of energy after just a couple of laps, so the whole race was very hard. After just four laps, my energy was sapped. I gave it my best. It was not the result we wanted before starting the weekend, because we knew we could be stronger, but the way things went, a point isn’t a bad return. I am confident that we can improve."
31 NIKLAS AJO
"It was a great race with a nice battle at the end. I lost many positions on the opening laps and I had to push a lot to keep up. Then I stuck behind the large group. On the last lap I thought that it was my moment and, step by step, I crept up into the top positions. I went from being far back to fifth. On the last corner of the last lap I made a good start, but Oliveira pushed me a little onto grass and I think that was where I lost the podium. I think I would have had the opportunity to take advantage of multiple slipstreams. Anyway, it was a great race and I'm very happy."
BRILLIANT BASTIANINI STOPPED ON THE LAST LAP AFTER MASTERFUL PODIUM FIGHT AT MUGELLO
Enea Bastianini showed a sensational performance today during the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello, which unfortunately ended with a fall a few corners from the finish line: the young Junior Team GO&FUN Moto3 rider, in fact, couldn’t avoid the bikes of Jack Miller and Miguel Oliveira, who suddenly crashed in front of him on the last lap.
Until that time, the 16-year-old rookie from Rimini made an incredible race: started from sixteenth on the grid, Enea was able to recover many positions, taking the lead of the race during lap 9. After that, Bastianini has been a great protagonist of the exciting fight for the victory in the leading group, making several nice passes and also returning some times in the lead. On the last lap, the Italian was already preparing the final sprint on the finish line, when he was unfortunately involved in the incident between Miller and Oliveira.
His team-mate, Niccolò Antonelli , was forced to retire after just five laps, following a contact with Jakub Kornfeil.
NICCOLO' ANTONELLI (DNF)
“It was my mistake: I was in the large leading group, and coming into the first corner under braking, I hit Kornfeil, with which I apologize. Probably, I should have braked a little bit before to avoid problems, but I took a risk which went wrong. I’m really disappointed”.
ENEA BASTIANINI (DNF)
“I think I had the best race of my life: I started sixteenth, I managed to recover a lot of positions and at one point I even took the lead for the first time! It’s been exciting. Too bad only for what happened on the last lap, when I was unfortunately involved in the crash in front of me. I was already preparing the final sprint because I had already seen in the previous lap that I could overtake the riders in front of me, staiying behind on the last corner, thanks to the slipstreams. Unfortunately, it didn’t go like that”.
“Bastianini surprised all the team once again: I’m sorry only because shortly before the last lap, on the last corner, Enea lost some ground to avoid to touch another rider and he lost positions on the straight. Probably this episode affected his race, because otherwise he could have avoided the accident between Miller and Oliveira on the last lap. It’s a pity, because the Italian Grand Prix is very important for us and today Enea could give us a great result. Antonelli unfortunately touched another rider after a few laps: Niccolò needs to finish races, but also here he failed to do it”.
Schrotter braves injuries to score again
Marcel Schrotter produced a fine display of perseverance to battle through his injuries to collect more valuable Moto2 World Championship points at the Gran Premio d'Italia TIM Moto2 event at Mugello. The young German rider began the 21 lap dash around the 5245 metre track from the front of the fourth row after he pulled off a heroic qualifying performance yesterday to seize 10th. After a typically hectic start in the intermediate class, Schrotter was squeezed down to 17th at the end of the first lap but soon set into a firm and consistent rhythm, ascending to 14th by lap seven and then continuing to plug away before clinching 12th position from Sandro Cortese. His impressive race pace saw him pull away from the following pack and close in on P11 although the contusion injuries he sustained in Friday's FP2 practice session limited him from clinching the position in the final laps. His 12th place marks a thoroughly inspiring weekend for the young German, whose resilient ride saw him collect another four world championship points which increased his tally to 21 and raised him to 14th in the standings.
As for Ricky Cardus, his ambition was to get a good start and climb upwards from the 19th position on the grid where he qualified. By the end of the first lap Cardus was 20th and despite his relentless efforts to ascend up the field he was unable to climb any higher and finished the Grand Prix in 19th position. The result closes a challenging weekend for the Spanish rider who will aim to make amends during his home race at Catalunya next round.
Marcel Schrotter : 12th - Championship : 14th - Points : 21
"I am pleased with my result today as we collected some more important championship points but I was hoping that I could have done a little better by staying with the front riders for a bit longer. My rhythm in the race is good yet the opening lap is always tricky in this class and it was here that I gave myself a big disadvantage. In the first corner I was a bit too early on the brakes as well as too careful and so some riders went past. However I got stuck into my rhythm and managed to pass a lot of them back whilst also being able to produce lap times similar to the leading group which is very pleasing. For the next race we will aim to improve especially during the first laps."
Ricky Cardus : 19th - Championship : 18 - Points : 13
"It was a difficult weekend for me as I don't particularly like Mugello as a circuit. It's disappointing to not collect any points as I worked really hard all weekend with my Tech3 Racing Team, but in such a competitive class you pay more for such small mistakes. Now I will move on and focus on the next race in Montmelo which is my home track. For sure this will give me extra motivation and I am convinced we'll perform well and be up higher in the timesheets to collect important points again for the Tech3 Racing Team."
Herve Poncharal - Team manager :
"I am happy with Marcel's performance as he managed to collect four points riding through his injury. He overtook some experienced riders and it must have been tough in the last part of the race due to his shoulder condition. It was a shame about the start as he got off the line well but was trapped on the inside during the first corner and got pushed back, finishing the first lap in 17th. This wasn't ideal for him but we know how Moto2 can be. However he got his head down and never gave up. For quite a few laps his times were similar to the riders competing for 5th so we can't be disappointed. We know the potential of Marcel and our Moto2 team so Barcelona will be another strong possibility to show what we can achieve. As for Ricky it was a challenging weekend. His race itself was ok but he was too far back to fight for points so unfortunately we have to say that this race was a learning experience. For sure the next round which is his home GP will see him back fighting in the top fifteen. "
Hafiq Azmi DNFs at Mugello
SIC-Ajo Team rider crashes out on lap three of Italian Grand Prix, when riding 19th and pushing for points.
06/01/2014 - Mugello Circuit, Italy
The Italian Grand Prix at Mugello concluded prematurely for Hafiq Azmi, as the young Malaysian rider failed to complete the sixth round of the Moto3 World Championship. The SIC-Ajo Team rider crashed out on the third lap of the race, when he had been riding in nineteenth and was chasing the first points of his GP career.
With bright sunshine and a track temperature of 21ºC , Hafiq Azmi made a good start from the seventh row of the Mugello circuit –where he had not competed since 2011. Having gained a position on the opening lap, he tried to move up through the second group in the battle for fifteenth. However, he lost the front of his bike at Turn 9 of the third lap and was unable to finish his fifth consecutive Moto3 race.
Hafiq Azmi paid tribute to his friend and fellow rider, Husni Aizat Malik, who died last week, with a special helmet emblazoned with the number 7 and the silhouette of his late friend.
The rookie will have another opportunity to fight for points at a track he knows well, next time out at Barcelona.
38 HAFIQ AZMI
"We were out of luck today and weren't able to have a good race. We made a good start and were keeping up with the group, but then I crashed on Turn 9. We had worked hard all weekend, and it is a pity not to have finished the race. Now we have to focus on the next race and work like we did this weekend once more."
Deroue crashes in all-or-nothing attempt, Carrasco duels bravely in solid race
Numerous overtaking manoeuvres and extremely close racing made the Moto3 race of the Grand Prix of Italy quite a thrill. Scott Deroue and Ana Carrasco were entangled in the middle of the action all the time. In a dramatic all-or-nothing attempt to grab the last point Scott Deroue crashed out in the final corner of the Mugello circuit. Ana Carrasco just fell a few inches short in the fight for 19th.
The race was action-packed from the first to the last second. Both RW Racing GP riders had a good start and won positions, with Deroue in 24th at the end of the first lap and Carrasco in 29th. Both of them continued their way up in the busy crowd.
From about the fifth lap two big groups were formed: about 15 front runners divided by the rest by just a few seconds. Gradually the two groups fell apart in smaller groups, with Deroue in a group of seven (with Sissis, Grünwald, Kent, Locatelli, Oettl and Ferrari) that was riding in 15th to 21st and changing positions all the time. Carrasco was right behind them together with Livio Loi.
Deroue had to give his best to hang on to the group in the final stages of the race, but he managed, knowing there was at least one point at stake. When in the final lap three of the front runners (Miller, Marquez and Bastianini) crashed out while fighting for the podium the chances for points suddenly increased dramatically. Deroue immediately responded and went out on full attack for 15th position. The Dutch rookie took all the possible risks in his all-or-nothing challenge and made a highsider when he opened the throttle in the final corner.
Ana Carrasco saw her team mate crashing when she was duelling with Loi and Bryan Schouten. She was able to hold off Schouten but fell just a meter short to beat Loi.
Ana Carrasco – 20 (+38.516)
“What a race that was! I was in a constant duel with Loi and it was great. Unfortunately we couldn’t stick with the group ahead of us, and be in the fight for points.
I had a good start and won five positions in the first lap. We moved up to 23, 24 and ended up fighting for 19th, changing positions all the time in the final lap. I tried to use the slipstream to the finish line, but I just fell short a meter or so.
I’m happy with the race. I won 13 positions, I was able to fight all the time and my pace was good: for almost all of the race I was faster than in practice. It is clear we have to work on that, to be further up on the grid and being in a better position to fight for points.”
Scott Deroue – crash
“I thought I was running in 19th or 20th in the final lap and all of a sudden I saw those three lying in the gravel. I realized immediately I had a point at my fingertips and gave it an all-or-nothing-go. I went into the final corner at Danny Kent’s rear wheel and I knew I had to exit the corner faster than him to be able to beat him on the finish line. But I was a bit too harsh on the throttle and couldn’t keep the bike in the apex of the exit.
It was a good race overall and I really owe my mechanics a big ‘thank you’ for getting my bike in perfect condition after my crash in practice. I had a good start and was able to stick with the group from the beginning. It was a great race with much action and overtaking. The last few laps were really, really hard. In the group of seven everybody was capable of grabbing points and we all knew that.
I don’t regret crashing in the final corner. It was a do-or-die-try and I came out empty-handed. But if I had not tried, I would be empty-handed as well. I rather have it this way.”
Rabat reasserts his authority with a win at Mugello
Mugello, Italy – 1 June 2014: Tito Rabat strengthened his position at the top of the Moto2 World Championship standings with a perfect weekend at Mugello. The 25-year-old Spaniard started from pole position and posted a new lap record on the way to his third win of the season this afternoon.
Today’s victory, which came after chasing down early leaders Jonas Folger and Luis Salom, sees Rabat extend his championship lead over his Marc VDS teammate to 22 points.
Mika Kallio declared himself less than satisfied with his sixth place finish today, despite extending his lead over third placed Maverick Viñales in the championship standings. The Finn carved his way through the field in the early laps, after starting from 11th on the grid, but got held up behind Dominique Aegerter while the leading trio escaped at the front. The pair then battled throughout the race, with Kallio only losing out on fifth place after a photo finish.
Persistence paid off for Livio Loi this afternoon, with the 17-year-old Belgian claiming a 19th place finish after fighting his bike for every one of the 20 laps over which the Moto3 race was won. Loi is hopeful of finding a solution to his handling problems during a test at the Mugello circuit on Tuesday, at which he’ll be joined by his Moto2 teammates.
Representing the team on the podium alongside Tito Rabat was the Marc VDS Team Coordinator, Marina Rossi, who celebrated her birthday today at Mugello.
Tito Rabat // Race Winner
“I’m very happy with the win today. I made a good start, but then I touched with Salom and that allowed him and Folger to get away at the front. But I was able to bridge the gap and then I had a fantastic battle at the front of the race, before eventually working my way through into the lead and pulling enough of a gap to stop them slipstreaming past me on the straight. It’s good to win before going back to Spain for my home race in two weeks but, in terms of the championship, it’s just another race and there are many more to go yet. Now we must focus on the test here at Mugello on Tuesday, so we can go to the next race and try and win again.”
Mika Kallio // 6th
“The race result was better than our qualifying position and it’s opened up the gap back to third in the championship standings, but Tito has also extended his lead, so we can’t really be satisfied with the result here at Mugello. I managed to make up a lot of places in the opening laps, but then I couldn’t find a way past Aegerter; he was so strong on the brakes, but then really slow in the corner and it just broke my rhythm. I managed to get past him with a few laps to go but, again, he passed me on the brakes straight away. It was close at the line, but race direction gave him fifth place after watching the video replay. The bike felt better in the race, but there’s still something missing and we need to find it before heading to Catalunya, where we’d normally use the same set up.”
Livio Loi // 19th
“The race went pretty much as expected if I’m honest. The feeling with the bike just wasn’t there, so much so that it felt more like a 20-lap fight than a race. We tried pretty much everything with the bike this weekend, but the small improvements we did find just weren’t enough. We’re testing here at Mugello on Tuesday and I hope we can find something then, before we head to the next race. Last year I felt really strong at Catalunya, so I don’t want to go there this season and struggle with the same problems.”
Michael Bartholemy // Team Principal
“If anyone doubted that Tito Rabat has a stranglehold on this championship at the moment, then this weekend has proved them wrong. He had the perfect weekend with pole position, a new lap record and he now heads home for the Catalunya race with a bigger lead in the championship and the confidence that this brings. Mika had had a difficult weekend trying to find a workable set up on the bike but, like always, he got the job done in the race. I know he’s not so happy with the result, but sixth place means our two riders now enjoy a bigger advantage at the top of the championship standings. Livio did what he could today. You could see he was uncomfortable on the bike, but he persisted and ended up inside the top 20. We will test here on Tuesday, so at least we have a chance to try and find some improvement for Livio ahead of the next race.”
JUANFRAN GUEVARA REAPS REWARDS FOR EFFORTS AT MUGELLO
MAPFRE Aspar rider ends weekend of constant progress with eighth place –his best result in the World Championship to date
The importance of slipstreaming at Mugello was underlined once again in Moto3 on Sunday, both at the start and especially at the end. A group that at times included 19 riders was tightly packed at the Italian Grand Prix, with six riders leading the way at various points over the 20-lap race. It was a contest that was highly unpredictable, with constant changes of position and a slow pace in the 2-minute mark on some laps. Despite being slower than in previous days, the pace did little to dull the spectacle of the Moto3 race –which threw up some surprises at the end. Jack Miller caused a crash at the end that took out Marquez and Bastianini, breaking up the overtaking showcase, then Romano Fenati took the win over Isaac Viñales and Alex Rins. Fenati’s triumph came after slipstreaming his rivals –who needed a photo finish to decide who would place second.
Juanfran Guevara had been working hard all week with his MAPFRE Aspar team to improve confidence, performance and knowledge –and the strategy paid off on race day. On Saturday he had taken his best qualifying result in the World Championship, with eighth place on the grid, and today he claimed his best finish to date with the same position. Pushing hard from the start and holding his position on the opening laps, Guevara learnt to battle with the leaders, elbow-to-elbow, en route to eight World Championship points. The result was proof that hard work pays off, and that he is ready to repeat the showing at future rounds. Today his bike also deserves a special mention, as with it Guevara clocked the race top speed (241,6 km/h, the quickest all weekend) and the sixth fastest lap of the Moto3 contest (1.57.958).
8th Juanfran Guevara: “This weekend went very well. We’ve worked hard and taken a step forward compared to other races. I enjoyed myself a lot here at Mugello. Maybe in the first part of the race I was a little slow, and found it hard to find the pace, but later I felt very comfortable riding in the lead group. With five or six laps remaining I had caught up a lot and could see myself fighting for the win. That was when my lack of experience showed, as I felt strange being up at the front. It had to happen someday, so I am very happy; the positive thing today is that I learnt a lot. This result will help us to believe in ourselves and to know that we can be up there. Today I took my best Grand Prix race result, which is very satisfying, but we have to keep working to be in the same position at every race.”
JORDI TORRES PLACES JUST OUTSIDE TOP TEN
MAPFRE Aspar rider finishes eleventh in Italian GP. Nico Terol concludes 24th at Mugello
Normally the most closely-contest class in the World Championship, the Moto2 race in Italy was a less frantic affair than at previous rounds. The contest at Mugello began with Jonas Folger pushing to escape early on, swiftly breaking up the leading pack and bringing Luis Salom with him. Folger dictated the pace, Salom waited back, and Tito Rabat provided the excitement with a brief comeback at the halfway mark. Upon arrival with the frontrunners diced with Salom, gaining several tenths of a second, then set the fastest lap of the race on the penultimate time around. Rabat won, with Salom and Folger accompanying him on the podium.
Jordi Torres knew that it would not be an easy race, but that was not going to stop him from trying. The MAPFRE Aspar rider came to Mugello with big changes made to his bike -changes that helped him to regain confidence and feeling, and which yesterday helped him to him qualify in a season-best seventh place. Today he started strong, but an incident at the start of the race cost him several positions and he almost crashed. Torres managed to get back on track and rejoin the race to finish eleventh, close to the top ten.
Teammate Nico Terol, had also partially regained a good feeling with his bike this weekend, and he was very motivated ahead of the race at Mugello. However, an issue with his front tyre has prevented him from keeping up a steady pace from the start, and in the end he concluded in twenty-fourth position.
11th Jordi Torres: "We had a good feeling about this race, because we had taken a major step forward this weekend. At the last race we had finished far back, and that led us to lose confidence. But for this Grand Prix we made big changes to the bike and throughout the weekend we could see that they were developing well. Here in Italy we returned to the right track, but we still have a few changes to make to the bike. In the race I made a good start, but on the second corner I was involved in a melee and almost went to ground. I lost several positions and I had to make a comeback. I had to fight a lot with my rivals. The positive point of the weekend is that we have found up a good base setup, and from now on everything will be much easier."
24th Nico Terol: "In the warm-up session we continued with our work from yesterday, and the feeling was better. I also maintained a fairly steady pace. With small steps forward we have been regaining confidence on the bike. Basically, this morning we continued working with the same methodology as throughout the weekend. I was convinced that we could have a good race, but right from the start I had problems with the front tyre and I found it difficult to keep up. It was a shame, as we were hoping to get better outcome from this race at Mugello."
SIMEON DIGS DEEP TO GET 2 POINTS IN A DIFFICULT ITALIAN GRAND PRIX. BALDASSARRI 23rd
The Italian Grand Prix ended with the two points of the 14th place for Xavier Siméon and the Team Federal Oil Gresini Moto2: a performance below expectations, in line with the results of the practice in a very difficult weekend, during which the Belgian rider has never been able to find the right feeling with his Suter in order to be competitive.
Lorenzo Baldassarri, Team Gresini Moto2, crossed the finish line in 23rd place: the 17-year-old Italian, who made a good first half of the race, he had to slow down in the latter part because he got really tired after he tried to compensate physically the set-up problems of his bike on corner entry.
The team will be back on track at Mugello in two days, Tuesday, June 3rd, for a day of testing.
XAVIER SIMEON (14th)
“It’s been a very difficult weekend: today I struggled to get some points and obviously is not what we expect from racing. We are concerned we have not yet understood what’s our problem: since the first lap I tried to push, but the other riders are faster than both on entry and on the exit of the corners. We have never reached the right feeling with the bike to be competitive. In any case, at least we haven’t made mistakes, and 2 points are always better than 0, as happened in Le Mans. In two days we will be back on track at Mugello for some testing and this is positive: we can try different things to try to improve: our rivals took a step forward and now we are a little late. We want to find again the direction that allowed us to fight with the fastest”.
LORENZO BALDASSARRI (23rd)
“It’s been a tough race: I didn’t start very well, but in the early laps I was keeping a good pace and I recovered different positions. However, it was very hard to enter the bike in the fast corners and I had to compensate for this lack physically: I've been able to do it for a while, then I got tired and this affected my pace. Continue to push hard was too risky. Here at Mugello next Tuesday we will have time to try out a number of important changes on the bike to try to solve these problems”.
“Siméon fought hard and he was able to get some points, but we have been struggling all weekend and we really don’t understand our problems: the bike was sliding a lot and Xavier couldn’t ride as usual. Fortunately, in two days we can take advantage of the testing program here at Mugello, where we hope to better understand how to improve. Baldassarri concluded his second consecutive race, even though in the end he was a bit tired and he struggled. However, the important thing for Lorenzo is to cross the finish line and gather experience”.
Moto3 - First points of the season for San Carlo Team Italia at Mugello
Strong race for Matteo Ferrari, 14th; positive return to action for Andrea Locatelli
Target accomplished today for San Carlo Team Italia at Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello, theater of the 2014 Gran Premio d’Italia. Matteo Ferrari (Mahindra MGP3O # 3) obtained a positive 14th place finish and his first 2 points after a hard-fought race while Andrea Locatelli, returning after two races of absence due to injury, got close to the "target” passing under the chequered flag in 18th position.
Starting both from eighth row on the grid, the Italian pair rode among the riders battling for a top-15 position since the early stages. After a series of remarkable overtakings Matteo Ferrari achieved a promising result for the rest of the season gaining two precious points that repay the strong commitment of the whole team.
Positive performance for Andrea Locatelli also, who was back on his Mahindra MGP3O # 55 after two rounds of stop due to the injury suffered last April at the Autodromo Termas de Rio Hondo. The Italian finished the race in 18th and not far from his teammate.
A good overall result, strongly pursued by San Carlo Team Italia to celebrate the 100th anniversary of CONI (Italian National Olympic Committee) enhanced by the support of CONI’s President Giovanni Malagò, visiting Mugello to attend the sixth round of the 2014 World Championship which today saw the third win of the season of Romano Fenati (KTM the Sky Racing Team VR46) a rider brought-up to international competitions in a three-years project (2011-2013) of the Federazione Motociclistica Italiana’ Team Italia.
Matteo Ferrari (San Carlo Team Italia - Mahindra MGP3O #3) 14th
"I'm reasonably happy. Gaining my first championship points is a good thing and we can say we have achieved our target for the weekend. I nevertheless cannot be fully satisfied because I lost contact with the group on front in the early stages of the race. Looking at our times we could have got a better result. In any case it has been a good weekend, a good starting point for the rest of the season".
Andrea Locatelli (San Carlo Team Italia - Mahindra MGP3O #55) 18th
"It was a good opportunity to get into the points for the first time but, unfortunately, from mid-race onwards I lost ground due to a technical glitch. I’m a bit frustrated but I try to look at the positive sides of today's race: my lap times have been good and my arm held-on well over race distance; I haven’t had any kind of physical problem returning after two races of absence. Anyway it’s a shame, in light of the excellent work done during the practices we deserved to get in the points. We will continue working in this direction, starting from the next day of test here at Mugello next Tuesday".
Virginio Ferrari (Team Manager - San Carlo Team Italia Moto3)
"We can be reasonably satisfied with today. We achieved our first goal: to gain our first championship points, a result that rewards the efforts and the commitment of the whole team. Matteo rode strongly and tirelessly to bring home this result, while Andrea was affected by a series of unfortunate little problems: I’m sure that without these drawbacks he would have managed to get into the top-15. This race clearly demonstrates that our riders are able to respond to any challenge before them. From outside it’s not easy to understand this; they never gave-up, showing to be serious professionals and two young guys of absolute talent and perspective".
AGT REA Racing finish just outside the Top 20 after a fighting performance at the Mugello GP
AGT REA Racing brought a difficult weekend to a positive close with a fighting performance at the Gran Premio d’Italia on Sunday. Finishing just outside the Top 20 in 21st position, Gino Rea fought hard to move forward throughout the entire race, putting in consistent lap times and his fastest lap time of the weekend.
Gino Rea: “It’s been a really tough weekend for us and although the position is not where I know we can be, it was very a positive way to finish off here at Mugello. We drastically changed the bike geometry between qualifying and warm up, then re-adjusted the suspension settings to suit between warm up and the race. So for the first few laps I wasn’t as fast as I wanted to be and lost a bit of ground. But mid-race I did my best lap of the weekend and caught up to the group in front.
“We were able to catch and beat some established teams. It felt good to pass Julian Simon on the last lap and stay ahead of Nico Terol. My lap times were really consistent in the race and I gave it everything I had to catch the group. When I got to them, I thought I would have been able to pass all of them but I got caught up in the battle.
“I think it’s a really positive way to finish the weekend and I would like to thank all of my team, as well as my sponsors American Green Technology and charity partner LIVESTRONG. It was also great to support the KISS Mugello project this weekend and it was a real pleasure for AGT REA Racing to be joined by Kattia Hernandez, Director of the International Environment Commission (CIE) at the FIM and Ignacio Verneda, the Executive Director of Sports at the FIM, on the grid before the race.”
Team Principal Dave Peterson had this to add. “What an exciting weekend of racing. Three of the best races I’ve seen in a long time. Today was Gino’s best performance to date even though we’ve had better results. He found his rhythm today and moved forward in the pack for the whole race. To top the weekend off, I’m excited to have met members of the FIM and to understand their green initiative. We hope to help promote that initiative in any way that we can. All in all a tremendous weekend.”
AGT REA Racing look forward to the official Moto2 test on Tuesday at the Mugello circuit. The team hope to work on areas where they have struggled and been unable to improve upon during race weekends. The 7th Round of the Moto2 World Championship will take place at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya on June 15.