Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Pol Espargaro delivered a resolute performance to finish the Grand Prix of The Americas in a well deserved 7th place in front of approximately 56,000 passionate fans. The 2013 Moto2 World Champion kicked off his battle from 13th on the grid and undertook a positive start before bringing himself right in the mix in the fight for the top independent rider. He continued his strong pace and by lap seven he had risen up to 10th. After moving ahead of the group, Espargaro dug deep and set a series of consistent lap times to gap the pursuing riders and with the 21-lap lasting competition drawing to a close, the Spaniard remained cool and eventually sped over the finish line in 7th. The result leaves him fourth in the 2016 World Championship standings and Monster Yamaha Tech3 third in the team standings, ahead of the MotoGP paddock returning to Europe.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team garage, Bradley Smith suffered bad luck in the round three battle despite producing a thorough effort in the race. The young Briton began the Grand Prix from the fourth row on the grid after a determined display in qualifying yesterday. When the lights flicked off, Smith bolted forwards and quickly set into his rapid rhythm as he looked to clinch a strong point scoring finish. By lap 8, he was up to 8th and had closed in on the three riders in front of him yet, his luck ran dry and he fell at the 11th turn. Nevertheless, the determined 25-year-old remounted and pushed all the way to the chequered flag, but eventually completed the race in 17th due to a damaged gear lever. The 2015 fastest satellite rider will now seek to bounce back strongly at the next GP at the Circuito de Jerez.


Pol Espargaro

Position : 7th - Championship : 4th - Points : 28


Pol Espargaro - 2016"Today I certainly didn't feel very comfortable on the bike but having said that I did my very best in trying to keep it on two wheels. At the beginning of the race, we decided to use the softer front tyre and in all honesty, it was really tricky to follow the other riders on full fuel load. Yet, once the tank emptied a bit, I was able to start pushing and I began catching my teammate. Then suddenly, I saw some crashes in front and I even had a moment myself, so I decided to settle down as I wanted to finish the race and leave the US with some valuable points. In the end, this is what we achieved, so now I am 4th in the championship which is a nice gift for the boss, as it's his birthday today. The next GP will be back in Europe and on my home soil so I can't wait to go to Jerez, especially after the positive start to the season so far. Of course, we go there with the aim of improving our performance further, but I believe that this year more than ever, consistency is the key for a strong championship result.

Profil 


Bradley Smith

Position : 17th - Championship : 13th - Points : 16

Bradley Smith - 2016


"Unfortunately, today’s result wasn’t the best and all of our hard work was lost because of something that was out of our control. I lost the front at turn 11 due to an oil spill or something on the racetrack. It was just a little bit off the racing line and when Cal went down it caught me by surprise, so I released the brake. I was slightly off line, just like he was and I fell at the exact same place. This was frustrating because it wasn’t a mistake of my own, but this is racing and these things happen. I couldn’t really do much once I got back on the bike because I had a damaged gear lever, which made it difficult to shift, plus I also lost the anti-wheelie so the final laps were tricky to say the least. However, I was determined to finish because we had worked hard all weekend and overall there are still many positives to consider as we were definitely stronger at the beginning of this Grand Prix than we have been in the first two. So to conclude, I am happy with the final performance at this event, but I am disappointed that something silly like this ruined our race. Now, we have a lot of work to do to catch up on points in the championship but once we go to Jerez we will be ready to push forward again.”

Profil 


Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :


“What a weekend! The Circuit of The Americas is a really tough and difficult track plus the weather conditions weren’t easy, but in the end, I am very pleased with the outcome because it was a hard race. We gambled a bit with the rear tyre and decided to go with the soft compound option for both riders. Ultimately, I believe that it was that right choice as they were able to stay consistent until the final stages of the GP. The front locked a lot for Pol in the closing laps so it was tricky for him to keep a good rhythm, but I have to say thank you very much and congratulations to our Spanish rider for what he has done so far this season. Maybe the results haven’t been incredibly exciting, but at the end of the day, he is 4th in the championship. We knew that these first few rounds would be tricky with challenging circuits for us yet after all, it was always going to be very important to arrive in Jerez with a strong position in the standings. On the other side of the garage, it’s a big shame about what happened to Brad because I feel that we could have had another solid team result. For some reason, Bradley went a little bit wide on the part of the track where we saw all the crashes and then his race was ruined. Nevertheless, he was very brave and motivated in bringing the bike back home as well as finishing the Grand Prix. This is especially admirable because the gear lever was completely broken so we have no idea how he managed to change gears! However, it’s a big pity for him to not take any points, but we know that he’s fast and he did a lot of hard testing here so I think that we will be in a much better position in Jerez. Now, we go back to Europe for a good rest for the whole team, whom I must say thank you to for their hard work, and next time we will meet in beautiful Jerez.”

Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Bradley Smith produced a spirited performance in qualifying today after working relentlessly to turn around his fortunes in Texas. The 25-year-old began the day by carrying on his efforts as he fought his way around the physical and meandering circuit before finishing with a time that meant he would contest in QP1. Here, he got straight up to speed and posted an impressive lap that was over a second quicker than his personal best in FP3. The strong time marked a significant improvement for Smith who worked closely with his team in preparation of the following 15-minute shootout. When it commenced, the Briton continued where he left off and eventually powered to a time that will see him begin the Grand Prix from the middle of the fourth row. The 2015 fastest satellite rider now has his sights set on sealing a top tier finish in tomorrow’s 21 lap race.

On the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team pit box, Pol Espargaro came agonisingly close to competing in QP2 twice, but just fell short after giving his all in two highly competitive MotoGP sessions. The young Spaniard kicked off his day by further adjusting the setup of his Yamaha YZR-M1 during FP3 and he missed out on the cut off to QP 2 by a blink of an eye and a mere 0.014 of a second. When the first qualifying practice commenced, Espargaro leapt forward and quickly set about speeding to a top lap. After pushing non-stop, he closed the session with a time that was just 0.018 from second, meaning that he will start the third round of the MotoGP World Championship from the head of the 5th row on the starting grid. Nevertheless, Espargaro intends to fight all the way to the chequered flag with the aim to join his teammate in the battle for the top independent rider position.


Bradley Smith

Position : 11th - Time : 2'04.988 - Laps : 7

Bradley Smith - 2016


"Firstly, I have to give a big thanks to the team because they didn’t pause from working throughout today and they never stopped believing in me or the direction that I wanted to go towards regarding the feeling of the bike. Without their efforts, it wouldn’t have been possible so again, I must thank them. Yesterday we made a few big adjustments and still struggled. However, step by step we’ve now come back to where we need to be due to our work in the third and fourth practice sessions today. Of course, I still believe that we can improve further tomorrow and we have a good chance to do this in the warm up as well as later in the race. I feel a lot more positive with the bike that I now have underneath me for the GP. Yet, having said that we still need to make a decision regarding the tyre choice, because we were working so hard on the setting of the bike that we didn’t decide on the tyres. It’s a fantastic result by my team and I’m really pleased with this position so now I look forward to seeing what we can achieve in the race.”

Profil 


Pol Espargaro

Position : 13th - Time : 2'04.867 - Laps : 6

Pol Espargaro - 2016


"The day ended in a disappointing way and of course, I’m not satisfied with the result and how things went. It’s strange because overall we managed to improve the bike and the feelings with the new harder rear tyre were positive. Yet, from FP3 onwards we started to experience some vibrations, which we weren’t able to solve today. Nevertheless, even if it was tricky to ride, I pushed as much as I possibly could in all of the sessions. In the morning, I just missed QP2 by 0.014 in the final seconds of the session and to be honest, this was quite frustrating. Afterwards, we experienced the same issues in FP4 and again in Qualifying 1. There, I really gave it everything I had and risked crashing out in every braking area, but in the end, it wasn’t enough to go to QP2 and once more, I missed out by only a small margin of 0.018. To start from the fifth row complicates the race a bit because the first corner is critical. In fact, I had a problem here at the beginning of the GP last year where another rider crashed into me and I couldn’t do anything about it. Anyway, this afternoon we will have to work to find a solution to our issue and I think that if we turn the situation around we have a good chance of riding to a decent result. Also, we still have to decide which rear tyre we want to use because at the moment we don’t have a clear indication. The soft is too soft for the 21 laps and with the hard one we can be more consistent but this kind of tyre makes us lose a few tenths every lap. So we have some work to do, but I am determined to finish the Grand Prix as well as I possibly can tomorrow."

Profil

Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Pol Espargaro embarked on his round three campaign with a run to 13th on the opening day of action in Texas. The Spanish star leapt into gear when FP1 commenced and began setting up his Yamaha YZR-M1 for Sunday’s race. He closed the session in 12th and when the afternoon practice started, he carried on his solid efforts before posting a personal best on his final lap. This time left him just over six tenths from the Factory Yamaha riders and leaves him optimistic of sealing a top grid position tomorrow.

On the opposite side of the pit box, Bradley Smith pushed throughout the day at the Circuit of The Americas as he adjusted the setup of his MotoGP bike to suit the meandering track. After making steps forward in the morning, he got straight back to work in FP2 and progressed by setting a lap time that was 1.019 quicker than his best from the opening session. Now, the Briton is fully focused on bouncing back tomorrow with his sights firmly set on seizing a strong qualifying result.


Pol Espargaro

Position : 13th - Time : 2'05.616 - Laps : 31

Pol Espargaro - 2016


"Altogether, the day has been pretty positive even if the gap to the top guys is quite considerable. Yet, fortunately, there is still plenty of time for us to fine tune our setting and I really feel that we started the weekend in the right way. This morning we received our new tyres, which I think will be the ones that we are going to use in the race. In that case, I’m pleased as today we proved once again that we are strong on worn tyres so I’m confident that we will be competitive in the final stages of the GP. Nevertheless, we still need to increase the grip level with the new tyres plus, I believe that we can improve the braking stability of my Yamaha M1 and I feel that we have a margin of progress to make in this area. Yet, I’m happy with what we have done so far on day 1 and I’m already looking forward to getting back on track tomorrow morning where I definitely want to score a top 10 finish in order to qualify directly for QP2."

Profil


Bradley Smith

Position : 19th - Time : 2'06.479 - Laps : 30

Bradley Smith - 2016


"Even though today didn’t go as well as we expected, I am confident about what we should be able to do tomorrow. We knew that we had to undertake a serious change with the way that we set up our motorcycle. Right now, we are trying our best to understand exactly what we need and how to work the Michelin tyres in the correct way. Therefore, when you make these type of adjustments, it always costs time to undertake them and get the feeling that we require. So although the result isn’t fantastic, I am satisfied with the improvements that we made. Friday is the day to practice and test new ideas, which is what I believe I did today. Of course, tomorrow we want to try to advance as much as possible, but right now, even if I look on the other side of the Tech3 garage, we seem to be struggling a bit more than usual here. Now we will analyse the data and this evening we will make a good plan for tomorrow.”

Profil 

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