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Team #suzuki ECSTAR’s #andreaiannone got his first taste of the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit on the first day of practice of the Argentinian GP with Italian classifying 10th with a best-lap 1’40.250, in a hard-fought session while Alex Rins struggled with the pain in his ankle, but managed to make solid progress during the day, closing today´s session in 20th place.
Today’s sessions proved to be very fast compared to last year; pretty much all riders improved on their lap time by two seconds, which suggests that the track is in better condition. Iannone, as well, was able to shave nearly two seconds off last year’s best for #suzuki and the GSX-RR. He further-improved on his times substantially from the morning to the afternoon (1'40.701 his best in FP1). His 10th position in the provisional classification is also good news for tomorrow as if rain falls, as expected, he has likely already done enough to secure direct access to Q2.
It was a positive day for Rins, considering his physical condition. He decided to start the first session without any painkillers or support on his ankle to better understand his present condition. Then he had a bandage applied in the afternoon to give him a stronger support without restricting the foot’s mobility. He was able to make solid progress in the bike set-up and enjoy the circuit. His focus is on gaining more experience this weekend as he doesn´t feel the pressure to push himself too far.
Davide Brivio – Team Manager:
“With Andrea, we had the objective of being in the top 10 just in case tomorrow brings bad weather, and we achieved it. We still have some room for improvement. There are many things that can be better when finished, so we will work tonight to deliver him a better package for tomorrow, in case it is dry. Alex is suffering some pain due to his fracture. We spoke with doctors and riding is not compromising the injury´s recovery. It is only a matter of bearing the pain. We are carefully listening to his feedback and his feelings about this. He is a little sad because he likes this track a lot and he is not enjoying it to its fullest. Of course, we are not in the position to give it 100%, so we are mostly taking this as an opportunity to do some laps and get experience on a #motogp machine.”
“The day was not bad, we started pretty well this morning, and in the afternoon things went better as well. The feeling is already good. We focused mostly on the tyres more than on the machine and we made some beneficial improvements. I already have some ideas for tomorrow and maybe also for the race, but we still need to modify some things on the machine and improve the settings so that I can be even more successful.”
“This morning I didn’t have as much pain as I expected in the ankle, and adaptation to the circuit has been very good. It has been a shame that we have come all this way with an injured foot. I can tell I'm going fast in the corners where my foot does not bother me. In the afternoon I came out with the foot bandaged, but it hurt more than in the morning. At the first start I rode well, but as the laps went by I felt more pain and could not go as fast as at first. For tomorrow, I will try to ride with some painkillers to see if it helps me to lessen the pain and try to do a good qualifying lap.”
GP of Argentina – Combined classification after FP2:
1. Maverick VIÑALES, Movistar Yamaha #motogp – 1'39.477
2. Marc MARQUEZ, Repsol Honda Team – 1'39.778 +0.301
3. Karel ABRAHAM, Pull&Bear Aspar Team – 1'39.880 +0.403
4. Alvaro BAUTISTA, Pull&Bear Aspar Team – 1'39.922 +0.445
5. Danilo PETRUCCI, OCTO Pramac #racing – 1'39.960 +0.483
6. Loris BAZ, Reale Avintia #racing – 1'40.120 +0.643
7. Cal CRUTCHLOW, LCR Honda – 1'40.124 +0.647
8. Jonas FOLGER, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1'40.157 +0.680
9. Aleix ESPARGARO, Aprilia #racing Team Gresini – 1'40.175 +0.698
10. #andreaiannone, Team #suzuki ECSTAR – 1'40.250 +0.773
11. Scott REDDING, OCTO Pramac #racing – 1'40.338 +0.861
12. Johann ZARCO, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1'40.340 +0.863
13. Dani PEDROSA, Repsol Honda Team – 1'40.345 +0.868
14. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Ducati Team – 1'40.399 +0.922
15. Hector BARBERA, Reale Avintia #racing – 1'40.431 +0.954
16. Valentino ROSSI, Movistar Yamaha #motogp – 1'40.531 +1.054
17. Jack MILLER, EG 0,0 Marc VDS – 1'40.588 +1.111
18. Jorge LORENZO, Ducati Team – 1'40.599 +1.122
19. Tito RABAT, EG 0,0 Marc VDS – 1'40.908 +1.431
20. Alex RINS, Team #suzuki ECSTAR – 1'41.083 +1.606
21. Pol ESPARGARO, Red Bull KTM Factory #racing – 1'41.632 +2.155
22. Bradley SMITH, Red Bull KTM Factory #racing – 1'42.074 +2.597
23. Sam LOWES, Aprilia #racing Team Gresini – 1'42.179 +2.702
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