The final day of testing for the MotoGP and Moto2 classes for 2012 wrapped up at Jerez under clear skies and slightly cooler conditions, but still perfect for testing Grand Prix motorcycles. The field had thinned out considerably for the final day, with the Colin Edwards' NGM Forward team having gone home, and Carlos Checa having flown out to Moscow to present the Russian round of World Superbikes the evening before, while the Forward and Pons Moto2 teams had also decided to pack up after the second day.
The lack of other riders made no difference to the top of the Moto2 timesheets, Scott Redding once again fastest aboard the Marc VDS Racing Kalex for the third day in a row. Bradley Smith's improvement on the 2012 Tech 3 bike also continued, the Englishman cutting another half a second off his time from yesterday, and ending just a tenth behind Redding. Gino Rea matched the pace of Smith, the young Londoner continuing to test for the Gresini team. Redding's teammate Mika Kallio was 4th fastest on the day, half a second quicker than Tech 3's Xavier Simeon.
Yonny Hernandez was the fastest of the BQR riders, just edging out Ivan Silva on their FTR Kawasakis. Whether Hernandez was fastest of the CRT riders remains to be seen: Randy de Puniet was circulating on the Aprilia once again, putting in a whole 70 laps, but no times were given for the Frenchman. The Aprilia has sparked much debate over the legality of it. Pictures showed the frame of the bike to be covered in black duct tape, hiding any differences from the view of casual observers. The finishing on frame spars betrayed the fact that this was not a chassis from a production RSV4, however.
The BMW WSBK team was also present, but yet again, no times were issued for either Leon Haslam or Marco Melandri. The press release issued after the test spoke of working on the BMW electronics package, but rumors persisted that the team was also testing the Magneti Marelli package, while other rumors suggested that the team could be trying out a Cosworth Pi system. The testing may or may not presage a switch to another electronics system, but it certainly will have provided valuable comparison data for both the team and the factory. BMW now head to Portimao for a three-day test alongside the Aprilia and Suzuki teams.
Unofficial times, courtesy of the official MotoGP.com website:
|2||Bradley Smith||Tech 3||Moto2||1:43.1||0.1||0.1|
|5||Xavier Simeon||Tech 3||Moto2||1:43.9||0.9||0.5|