2015 - Germany - Sachsenring

Smith concludes first half of 2015 with another top six finish

  • Written by Axel Raynal
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Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Bradley Smith guided his Yamaha YZR-M1 to another superb 6th position at the GoPro Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland in front of a crowd of more than 211,000 people. The young British rider began the race from the rear of the third row and leapt forward as the lights turned to green to close the first lap in 7th place. He brilliantly overhauled Yonny Hernandez on the 7th lap to claim 6th and then set into his fast race pace whilst trying to force a gap between himself and the chasing Cal Crutchlow. Smith’s consistency and rapid rhythm saw him open up a considerable distance to his championship rival and ultimately, he crossed the finish line with over six and a half seconds to Crutchlow. This marks the British rider equalling Andrea Dovizioso in 5th place in the championship with 87 points and also sees him as the victor in the satellite battle in Germany.

Meanwhile on the opposite side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 pit box, Pol Espargaro completed a demanding 30 lap battle at the tight Sachsenring track in 8th place. The 2013 Moto2 World Champion shot forward as the race began and completed the opening lap in his grid position which was 8th. As the race distance progressed, the Spaniard slipped backwards and by lap 11 he was running in 12th. Yet, he remained fully focused and then embarked on a recovery mission and on lap 15 he brilliantly dived on the inside of Aleix Espargaro to snatch 10th. Two laps later, he jumped past Danilo Petrucci and clawed back the gap to Yonny Hernandez, who he overtook with six laps remaining. Espargaro then dug deep to create a gap to the four chasing riders and met the chequered flag in 8th. His result today sees him finish the opening nine races in 9th in the championship standings but only three points adrift of Dani Pedrosa in 7th. However, before enjoying the deserved summer break, the 24 year old now heads to Japan to compete in the legendary Suzuka 8 Hour race with his teammate in a fortnight.

   
Bradley Smith
 Position : 6th Championship : 6th Points : 87

Bradley Smith - 2015"I am pleased with today’s performance, especially as it was a tricky race where I had to give it 100% but also remain smooth which is what you need to do with the Yamaha. We are the top satellite bike again and at the end of the 30 lap race, we had a strong advantage over both Cal and my teammate which is really positive. At the same time, I can’t help but be a little bit disappointed as I had a similar pace to Iannone but I wasn’t able to catch him because I lost a lot of time with Hernandez in the beginning of the race. It’s my own fault as I qualified in 9th so this is an area I need to improve in the second half of the season because I know we can fight inside the top five. In addition, I couldn’t put my left leg down at the end of the race as I had completely worn down my knee slider, which was a bit scary around here as there are so many left turns. Nevertheless, we are joint 5th in the championship and it’s been a great first half of the year. I am going to Japan tomorrow for another Suzuka 8 hour test, so I have the long haul flight to relax on after this race! A big thanks to all my team, they’ve given me a great bike at every race so far in 2015 and I hope they enjoy the three week break as much as me."

Profil 

   
Pol Espargaro
Position : 8th Championship : 9th Points : 64

Pol Espargaro - 2015"Today's 8th position is kind of a damage limitation because after a tricky start to the weekend on Friday, I was confident about the race as we had found a solution to our issues as well as a good setting for my M1 yesterday. In FP4 I was able to ride a consistent mid 1’22 rhythm, which would have been very positive during today’s sprint. Yet, as soon as we started the GP, I realised that something wasn’t quite right. I was lacking grip on the rear and it was impossible to turn into the corners. I had to fight with the bike for the entire 30 laps using my legs to get the bike to turn. I didn’t feel comfortable at any time. Still, I tried to do the best that I could and pushed as much as possible to pass the group in front of me. Of course, this is a long way from where we need to be so now we will analyse the data to ensure that this doesn’t occur again. Therefore, I leave Germany with a bitter taste in my mouth for the summer, which in my case is not going to be a holiday but I am very excited to be flying straight to Suzuka for the 2nd test for the eight hour race in two weeks."

Profil 

   
Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :

"It was a strong team result again today and a good way to finish the first half of the season before the summer break. Everyone in the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team has worked really hard during these months, so I must thank them all for being involved and for pushing 100%. Furthermore, today the riders gave the team a big reward for their efforts. Brad and Pol are 6th and 9th in the championship respectively and we, as a team are in 4th which marks a positive opening half of the year by both riders. Bradley showed another dimension today in his fight with Cal and clearly these two riders are the fastest satellite guys. It was a big fight as they come from the same country, have the same background, sponsor as well as having both been Tech3 riders, so of course there is a big rivalry. Brad was smart and showed a lot of determination, especially when opening a gap during the final stage of the race. On the other hand, Pol had a bit of a difficult first part of the race, but came back strongly as he lapped at a similar pace to Bradley and then passed all of the riders in front of him. The best possible finish in this circumstance was 8th which he achieved and he got some really valuable points, plus I also hope the arm was not a problem for him here today. Now the team will go on holiday but the riders are heading to Japan to take part in the Suzuka 8 Hours which is a very important project for Factory Yamaha Japan. We wish them luck and we hope they get some rest on the flight from Germany to Japan. Overall, we are very happy but there is still some room for improvement as we are a racing team and we want to win. However, we have fulfilled our mission for the first part of the year. Thanks to everyone on the team, they all deserve a relaxed holiday.” 

 

Espargaro to contest Sachsenring battle from 8th on the grid

  • Written by Axel Raynal
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Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Pol Espargaro will bolt from 8th on the grid aboard his Yamaha YZR-M1 after a firm qualifying performance in the 15 minute Q2 shootout at the tight and twisting Sachsenring circuit today. The young Spaniard began the second day by continuing to make steps forward with the setup of his MotoGP bike and concluded the morning FP3 session in 10th place, which allowed him to progress through to Q2. The 24 year old rider jumped straight into gear as the session began and pushed instantly in order to seize a strong grid position. With the seconds continuing down, Espargaro posted a best time of 1’21.274 which equalled an 8th place start, yet his performance saw him a blink of an eye from the second row by only 0.054. He now sets his sights on charging through the MotoGP field at the challenging circuit as he aims to lead the battle for the top satellite position in tomorrow’s race.

On the opposite side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team pit box, Bradley Smith will begin the 30 lap sprint around the 3.7 kilometre circuit from the rear of the third row on the grid after a resolute effort in qualifying today. The young British rider started the day with a rapid pace in FP3, where he finished in 5th position and which elevated him through to the QP2 face off. Here, he leapt into action and pulled the plug instantly as he did his upmost to clinch a top qualifying time. However, he was forced to enter the pits in order to repair the windshield at the end of his first lap after pulling off a dramatic save to prevent himself from a high side. Nevertheless, Smith determinedly returned to the track soon after and on his penultimate lap, he set a 1’21.329 which certified 9th on the grid, but was just over a tenth of a second from the second row. Tomorrow he will launch from the starting grid and will then intend to record a ninth successive top eight finish in 2015 at the GoPro Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland.

   
Pol Espargaro
Position : 8th Time : 1'21,274 Laps : 9

Pol Espargaro - 2015"In all honesty, I’m quite satisfied with how our day went and I feel ready for what will be a challenging battle tomorrow. In FP4 we found out how to improve our performance in the first and second sectors plus, our race pace with used tyres was really promising. As a result, this gave me a lot of confidence and energy for the qualifying session and overall, the final outcome was not too bad. We are in the same bracket as Valentino which is a tenth of a second, which means that we are only 0.054 from the second row. Nevertheless, we will have to begin the race from 8th with three open bikes in front of us, who were on soft tyres today. Therefore, the aim for tomorrow will be to climb up the rankings and finish the first half of the season with a strong result."

Profil 

   
Bradley Smith
 Position : 9th Time : 1'21,329  Laps : 10

Bradley Smith - 2015"quote.Overall, I am optimistic for the race tomorrow, despite the fact that I’m a little bit disappointed with my final qualifying position today. The slide that I had on my bike during my first flying lap affected our qualifying quite a bit. I didn’t take full advantage of the first set of tyres and then I was too nervous on the second pair, especially on my final lap where I lost a lot of time in the last sector due to this. Therefore, I’m a bit dissatisfied as my objective today was to qualify on the front two rows and even though we are not too far back from there, we are 9th and not 6th. However, to be starting on the inside of the track might be an advantage here. In addition, I have a good race pace and am confident with the bike and even though it will be a tricky event as the tyres drop quite a lot here, I am ready for a good challenge."

Profil 

   

Smith shines on the opening day at the Sachsenring

  • Written by Axel Raynal
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Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Bradley Smith battled the wind at the GoPro Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland to conclude the opening day of MotoGP action with a highly impressive finish of 2nd position. The British rider kicked off his weekend by undertaking a shake down with his Yamaha YZR-M1 in preparation for the 30 lap sprint on Sunday and completed the FP1 session in 13th. When the afternoon practice started, he continued to adjust the setup and assess the tyre options before undertaking a total of 27 laps around the 3.7 kilometre circuit. By the fall of the chequered flat, he had set a blistering time of 1’21.740 which left him only 0.119 from the top of the heap. His performance now leaves him confident of surging to a strong grid position in the all-important qualifying session tomorrow.

On the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 team garage, Pol Espargaro opened his 2015 MotoGP campaign at the Sachsenring by completing the first day of action in 13th place in the combined standings. The young Spaniard began the initial shake down in FP1 with a run to 12th position after suffering an unfortunate fall at the notoriously difficult turn 11. However, he sprinted back to the pits and leapt onto his second Yamaha YZR-M1 before concluding the session in this placement. When free practice two began, he continued his work at the tight and twisting German track as he undertook a total of 21 laps before finishing with a best time of 1’22.436, leaving him in 13th. Nevertheless, this lap left him just over six tenths of a second back from third and he now looks onwards to tomorrow where he intends to snatch a top starting position for the ninth round battle on Sunday.

   
Bradley Smith
 Position : 2nd Time : 1'21,740  Laps : 52

Bradley Smith - 2015 "It was a positive start to the weekend and I am feeling comfortable on the bike already. The base setting seems to be working well at this race track and I am looking forward to getting back out tomorrow and continuing this form. In addition, I’m happy about our showing today especially after the difficult time that we had last year. We were able to assess quite a lot of different front tyre options today and now we pretty much have everything clear for the race with regards to tyre choice. There are a few small details that we need to improve, which I noticed when I was following some other riders. Furthermore, I’m happy with how the bike handles the first and third sectors, but we need to make a few adjustments in order to improve in the other two. All in all, to be second at the end of day one is a strong start and now we need to keep this momentum for tomorrow, because qualifying is always so important at this circuit."

Profil  

   
Pol Espargaro
Position : 14th Time : 1'22,436 Laps : 41

Pol Espargaro - 2015 "It goes without saying that it has been quite a tricky opening day to the weekend. Unfortunately I crashed this morning, which meant that we lost a pair of tyres so I had to start the afternoon session with a used set. Still, our rhythm was really promising as I was running in 8th position despite the fact that the tyres had reached almost race distance. However, I then entered the pits and changed tyres for the final run but when I returned to the track, my feeling on the bike was just not the same anymore. This happened to Bradley in Assen and also to us quite a few times this year, yet it’s always better to have something like this happen on a Friday instead of later on in the weekend. Nevertheless, I am happy with how the bike is working even though we still have a degree of improvement to make in some areas. Most importantly, we have to be wise tomorrow because we now have one set of tyres less but we are still confident of clinching a strong result here this weekend in Germany."

Profil  

   

Smith and Espargaro ready to fight to success at Sachsenring

  • Written by Axel Raynal
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Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro head to this week's ninth round of the 2015 MotoGP World Championship fully charged and confident of clinching two notable finishes ahead of the summer break. The GoPro Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland will take place at the famous 3.7 kilometre Sachsenring circuit which hosted its first MotoGP race in 1998. The track is well known for it’s numerous tight corners, including the famous Omega turn and a main straight of only 700 metres, which makes the race a very physically demanding yet thrilling one for both, MotoGP riders as well as fans.

Bradley Smith will set his sights on another top six finish in this weekend’s 30 lap sprint aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1 as he intends to extend his lead in the satellite MotoGP bike standings. The British rider will also seek to maintain his consistent form this year, having finished no lower than eighth in the opening eight rounds. Meanwhile, Pol Espargaro looks to follow up his strong charge to fifth place at the Motul TT Assen with an impressive result in Germany. The 2013 Moto2 World Champion will aim to fight at the front of the battle for the leading satellite rider position as he hopes to close the first half of the season on a high note in front of the ever-passionate German fans.

   
Bradley Smith
  Championship : 6th  Points : 77

Bradley Smith - 2015 "It’s time to hit the Sachsenring again and I’m more determined than ever to score a top result aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1. Last year was a tricky weekend, but after the very encouraging opening half of the season that we have had, I am certain this year will be a positive experience. It’s a short track and one that is not as fast as some of the other rounds, plus there are a lot of tight corners which means that getting the Yamaha set up for these turns on Friday is integral to success on Sunday. It’s been a busy few weeks for Pol and I, as we tested in Japan for the Suzuka 8 hour race last week. However, the fatigue is no issue and I know that I have the ability to fight as close to the factory bikes as possible. I want to provide the German fans with a good show by giving them something to cheer about and I can’t wait to throw my leg over the M1 once again."

Profil  

   
Pol Espargaro
  Championship : 8th Points : 56

Pol Espargaro - 2015 "The Sachsenring race is one that is always a bit of a different GP as it’s more about the handling of the bike instead of the straight line speed, yet I am excited about riding the Yamaha YZR-M1 this weekend as always. The opening half of the year did not go entirely as we hoped for but after the success that we had in the Netherlands, I am determined to follow that result up with another strong showing in Germany. In terms of the track itself, there is not much of a straight which means that we don’t get much of a break when we’re on the asphalt. However, I really enjoy some of the tight corners, plus the waterfall is an amazing experience on a MotoGP bike! Last year I finished 7th, but after twelve more months of experience, I know we can do better and as long as we get the bike set up well, I will be aiming for a top six."

Profil  

   
Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :

"The Sachsenring race will mark the end of the first half of the 2015 MotoGP season and we are as excited as always about visiting Germany for the ninth round. It was another good show by both Pol and Brad in the Netherlands and to finish 5th and 7th is very encouraging, especially considering how competitive the MotoGP field is. Both boys gave it their absolute all and were right in the hunt with the factory riders, so we hope for the same this weekend. It may take them a bit of time to adjust back to MotoGP after their test in Japan for the Suzuka 8 hour race, but we know they will still do a great job this weekend. To have Brad as the leading satellite bike in the championship standings at the mid point of the season is very strong and Pol clinched his second top five finish of the year with a determined effort in the Netherlands. Therefore, we can’t wait to get going and hear the fans shouting like they always do at the Sachsenring.” 

 

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