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Jun 27, 2014 - 03:44 PM
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Smith Battles Tricky Conditions To Seize Second Row Start
Posted by: newsla on Jun 27, 2014 - 03:43 PM
MotoGP
Smith Battles Tricky Conditions To Seize Second Row Start


Today’s qualifying session was different from the usual MotoGP script with the rain occurring just as the session began, leading all riders to undertake only a couple of laps and in one fierce pack. That did not hinder Bradley Smith’s determination to battle as the leading satellite bike in tomorrow’s race, who skilfully guided his Yamaha YZR-M1 around the fast flowing Assen circuit to 6th place in qualifying. The young British rider produced a firm display today with his performance from yesterday afternoon enabling him to glide straight through to Q2, after this morning’s FP3 session experienced slight rainfall which prevented the riders from improving their lap times. In the second 15 minute shootout session, the 23 year old rider formidably powered through the tricky conditions to produce a best time of 1.40,818 which will see him start tomorrow’s race from the second row. The lap was fractionally off 3rd place by the blink of an eye with a gap of only 0.086 and his positive qualifying leaves the British rider primed to forcefully battle to beat his previous best result this year of 5th in Austin.

 

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Pol Espargaro will begin round 8 of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship from 11th on the grid after having experienced unlucky circumstances during qualifying today. The reigning Moto2 world champion opened proceedings in a truly inspiring manner by clinching 1st place in the dry morning practice session yesterday. He then progressed instantly through to Q2 courtesy of his FP2 time and had to face his first ever wet experience of his young MotoGP career in the most inconvenient moment of the weekend where everything comes down to one lap. He remained resolute in the tricky conditions, before pulling off a lap time of 1.43.085. Nevertheless, the solid rhythm the Spaniard showed over the whole weekend sees him remain determined to storm to success in tomorrow’s 26 lap dash around the 4542 metre ‘cathedral of speed’.


Bradley Smith Bradley Smith
Position : 6th Time :1'40.818 Laps : 4
Smith - Assen - 2014"It’s good to get the second row for the race around here tomorrow as the start is always vital to the race whether it’s wet or dry. I am still a little disappointed with myself as I was in a pack of twelve riders and perhaps I should have dropped back so that I could have undertaken the lap on my own without the traffic or distraction of the others. The bike felt good today despite the ever-changing conditions but it was a bit tricky at times. On my only lap, I had a big moment in the last section of the track and at one point I touched the grass so for sure I could have gone faster which is a shame as I painfully close away from my second front row start of the season. Anyway, it’s a decent position to start from and I will use it to get the best possible result tomorrow whatever the weather decides to do."

Pol Espargaro Pol Espargaro
Position : 11th

Time :1'43.085 Laps : 6
Espargaro - Assen - 2014"I have no words to describe how disappointed I am. The feeling with the bike and the confidence I had this morning had been amazing and until the qualifying session it had probably been my best day on a MotoGP bike. That’s what really upsets me. However, I think we have just been unlucky. In the first and only actual lap I had, I passed Jorge and tried to follow Marc who managed to do a good time. But he then slowed down and hindered my pace in the first sector. I lost too much time before I was able to pass him, so I couldn’t improve my lap time anymore. Afterwards the rain was too intense to lower it further and that’s why we are starting in 11th position. Nevertheless we have to be positive and I am happy to say that in the case of a dry race, we are really competitive even when starting from the fourth row, which will not give us an easy task to ascend up the field."

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