Day of adaptation for Ángel Nieto Team

2018-10-28 23:36
Karel Abraham and Mike Jones get first rides on Ducati GP17 and Ducati GP16 respectively during free practice for Australian Grand Prix

The first day of practice since Marc Márquez was crowned MotoGP World Champion for the fifth time saw the Spaniard lap seventh fastest on an incident-packed day at Phillip Island. Ahead of him the top six is made up by riders from four different manufacturers, separated by just half a second, with Andrea Iannone (1’29.131) on top ahead of Danilo Petrucci and Maverick Viñales. The first day of practice in Australia was set back by two hours because of a mechanical breakdown for a Moto3 rider.

The first day of free practice at the Australian Grand Prix was a day of adaptation for the Ángel Nieto Team, with Karel Abraham making his debut on the Ducati GP17 normally ridden by Álvaro Bautista and Mike Jones joining the team to ride the Ducati GP16. Both riders have a good feeling after the first day and have targeted areas to improve tomorrow. For Abraham the goal is to improve straight-line stability so that he can maximise the potential of the Ducati GP17, and even though he was seventeenth fastest today he is confident he has plenty of room to improve. On the other side of the garage Mike Jones lapped four seconds off the best time of the day and his goal is simply to close that gap tomorrow.

17th Karel Abraham 1:30.772 (27 laps): “This morning started well, everything was going perfectly with the Ducati GP17 despite the problems with the track conditions and the delays. This afternoon was more difficult, the bike is moving a lot on the straight and it is difficult to ride like that. I think we could have been faster than in the morning but this held us back. After my first day with the Ducati GP17 I have to say that there are a lot of differences, so it works differently and we need to solve this issue so that we can get the best out of the bike.”

24th Mike Jones 1:33.633 (38 laps): “I am very happy to have completed my first laps today with the Ángel Nieto Team. We have worked well together on this first day but I still need to get comfortable with the bike and that’s a matter of getting laps. We are going to work hard and think about the best way to ride this bike in order to progress. My main target for tomorrow is to be faster than today, and I think we have the room to improve because there are certain aspects that are holding me back at the moment. If we can make the right adjustments, the lap time will continue to come down.”

Source: Ángel Nieto Team

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