250cc : Riders' quotes after day one
Hector Barbera (Aprilia - Provisional Pole): “I'm really happy because we seem to have started on the right foot and that always gives you a confidence boost. We've solved a few problems we've had with the rear end of the bike in recent
weeks and I'm grateful to the technical staff for that. The conditions are tough but it's the same for everybody. We've got a good pace so I hope we can improve it tomorrow and be competitive in the race. It looks like we've put some problems behind us but I don't want to get too excited and just take things step by step.”
Jorge Lorenzo (Aprilia - 2nd): “The conditions were really difficult today, with a lot of heat and humidity. We went from strength to strength though, improving quite a lot in the afternoon, although a slight gearbox problem prevented me from going faster. We've got a day to work on it and there is plenty of room for improvement. I think I can lap a second faster and that's the target for tomorrow. To achieve that we'll have to study the telemetry and find out where I am not at 100%. I'd like to get my ninth pole position but I'm not obsessed with it. The most important thing tomorrow is to keep working well and get the best race pace possible for Sunday.”
Andrea Dovizioso (Honda – 5th): “Today we focused on the set-up of the bike and we did a great job; of course we are not at 100% yet, but we are at a good point and for this I'm very happy. Also, I made several consecutive laps with race tyre and I got quite good results. The rhythm is good but we can still improve.
At the end of the session, we put a new rear tyre on, which I didn't like so much and so I couldn't improve my lap time. Unfortunately, I don't feel very good and I suffered some cramps during my fastest lap; if I get better for sure I can be faster.”
Shuhei Aoyama (Honda – 7th): "I'm not completely happy today, despite having improved from the morning to the afternoon session, because I'm still 1.2 seconds from the fastest time. This morning I had some trouble because I still had to learn the circuit and in the afternoon it was better though not perfect yet. I had no problems with the heat today because it's been quite similar to the heat in Japan, maybe even less. The bike is doing well but we still have to improve because our lap times are not fast enough, and we have to work on the suspensions and the general set-up as well. We've also tested some tyres today but we haven't made any decision yet."
Martín Cárdenas (Honda – 8th): "Things didn't work out very well in the morning but we did some changes in the afternoon that helped us improve a lot and I was able to do my best qualifying so far, so I'm really satisfied with my position. The set-up of the bike is very good after the changes we made in the afternoon. The weather conditions are not being so hard so far. The sky was cloudy this afternoon, but we'll see what the weather does tomorrow."
Yuki Takahashi (Honda – 9th): “It has been difficult for me today, because I start feel pain on my left arm after three or four laps. For this reason, we changed our plans in the afternoon and I made many stops at the pit garage in order not to force too much my injured arm. The set-up of the bike is quite good but I'm not able to ride as I would and I am fast only when I follow other riders. But I'm confident tomorrow it will go better.”
Andrea Ballerini (Aprilia - 17th): “We are still far from being all-set, both chassis and engine-wise. I haven't yet found a good set-up to be happy with. Let's see tomorrow.”
Taro Sekiguchi (Aprilia - 22nd): “This track does not suit my physical conditions at all as you need to break hard and there are very many sudden changes of direction. Left corners are particularly tough because I can't push on my right hip when I need to, so as to enter the corner on the opposite side. I am trying to find new trajectories because it's impossible for me to follow those that I should pursue.”
Source: Aprilia & Honda