Circuit Length: 5.1 km
FP1: P10; 2’00.446 (DRY) – 14 laps
FP2: P21; 2’00.085 (DRY) –13 laps
FP1: P6; 2’00.030 (DRY) – 16 laps
FP2: P19; 1’59.960 (DRY) – 16 laps
Feeling more positive and confident on his #63 KTM machine, teammate Zulfahmi Khairuddin also made an impressive start building his pace and finishing morning practice in a solid tenth place.
“I’m very happy with the bike today and also I feel my performance has improved. This morning I felt really good with our set-up; the bike was working well and I was able to get into a rhythm. We made just a couple of small changes but straight away I could feel the improvement between the first and second exit. For the second practice the team and I agreed to try something different but unfortunately it didn’t help and from the beginning of the session I wasn’t as comfortable with the set-up. We didn’t have enough time to change back to our previous settings from the morning but at least now we know what works and what doesn’t. I was still able to improve my lap time in FP2, which was good, so I believe we can do well here. I know I can be competitive at this track, so I’m confident for tomorrow.”
“Today from FP1 the bike was working very well so in the afternoon we didn’t touch the settings; I was able to improve my time but not my position. Nevertheless I know we are definitely capable of more. At the end of second practice today, most riders were able to get a slip-stream but unfortunately I didn’t. I did my fastest time alone which was good, but this is also why I couldn’t go four tenths quicker and finish in the top ten. Still I am feeling positive; I think we have made good progress since the last GP. There is still work to be done but compared to Misano my feeling on the bike here is so much better. I think practice tomorrow morning will be good but of course qualifying will be the most important thing and this is what we really have to focus on. I hope that we can find something more for this and we can really aim for a good grid position for Sunday’s race. Now we have to be clever and see what we can do to further improve. The main thing is we have the speed and this is very important for us, so for sure we can be strong.”