The seventh Grand Prix of the 2017 Moto3 World Championship kicked off today, at the circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya.
Today’s sessions set the return of Rodrigo, after the collarbone fracture suffered at Le Mans Grand Prix and the following rehabilitation period. The Argentinian preferred not to take any unnecessary risk in the FP1, completing just few laps for a quick shakedown. In the afternoon, Gabriel’s confidence increased, as he improved lap after lap and he achieved the fifteenth time of the day (1'55.493).
Guevara faced the first session of the day with caution: because of a brief rain shower, the conditions of the track were mixed, therefore limiting the options to develop the set-up of the KTM. In the FP2, when the layout was completely dry, the Spaniard started to work in order to check the performance of the tyres at disposal. Juanfran ended the day in 23rd position, 1.748 seconds off the fastest guy on track, and with his technicians he will analyse the data in order to make some progress in tomorrow’s sessions.
#19 Gabriel Rodrigo: 15th - 1'55.493 [combined classification FP1 & FP2]
“This was the first day on track after the injury. It’s always a bit tricky, when you stop racing for a while, specially because we couldn’t maintain a consistent progression while I dealt with two injuries. I can notice the difference with a two-race stop, while the rest of the guys have been out on track. On the first few laps I felt pretty much like when we return to the circuits after the winter break. Step by step, with the help of my team, we set up the bike and, furthermore, I felt more and more confident as I was completing laps. In the end I had a pretty good feeling. Definitely this isn’t an incredible result, but we keep it as a base in order to start the weekend and work tomorrow. Now we’ll check the data with no rush and we’ll see where to improve the bike as well as my riding style. We’ll work to achieve a good Saturday.”
#58 Juanfran Guevara: 23rd - 1'56.005 [combined classification FP1 & FP2]
“In today’s first session we couldn’t really do much: the track was half dry and half wet, especially at the end, when we got out. Those few laps were useful just to confirm that everything was correct and that no big problem was waiting for us. In the FP2 we began to work with the race tyre and with the softer compound. We realised that here we have to make quite a few changes to the KTM setting. We started off with the bike as it was in Mugello, which was quite peculiar: because of the bumps of this layout we could notice the lack of traction and the movements in the front part. This afternoon we’ll work for tomorrow, in order to confirm the changes we have to prepare. In the FP3 we’ll try some options to change the set-up and to try and achieve a good qualifying. We still have room for improvement, tomorrow we’ll do our best to ensure a good position.”