MotoGP Test Qatar – Losail International Circuit
The last test of the MotoGP 2018 preseason has started today under the floodlights at the Losail International Circuit and the Reale Avintia Racing team riders, Tito Rabat and Xavi Simeon, declared themseves satisfied with the work done during the first day of testing.
Tito Rabat was early on track, but although the surface was not as dirty as in previous years, the lack of rubber has limited the level of grip and he decided to stop until there was a little more grip. The Spaniard came out very strong but suffered a small crash in turn 6.
After that, he took his second bike to continue improving the pace and his feelings with the Ducati Desmosedici GP17 at Losail track.
For Xavi Simeon today has been another day of learning and overall he finished satisfied. He didn’t try to set a fast lap and he focused on getting more confidence with the circuit riding a bike more than double horsepower than the Moto2 he has riding in the past years. Today his coach, Rubén Xaus, was with him at the garage, but he also got some advices from his compatriot and former 500cc rider, Didier de Radigues. He has just two more days of testing before the start of the season and all help is welcome for Simeon.
“At the end of the day I think it was a very positive first day. When we started the track it was very dirty and everything was horrible, that’s why we decided to stop for a while. But then we went out in track and working with my team we improved the feelings and we finished the day with a really fast rhythm. I’m very happy about that, but not so much with my fastest lap time, because although it’s not bad I sure that I’m able to do it better. For tomorrow the goal will be to faster in one lap and the also to improve the pace. The only negative from today was a small crash when I was braking with the bike straight, but we know why it happened.”
“Today I’ve started more calmly than the first day in Thailand. I didn’t go as well as I wanted to, especially because in the first laps it took me a lot of time to find enough confidence with the front tyre. The track was dirty, but less than the previous years here, so in that sense this was quite good. But I have the same problem as in Thailand; with used tyres I can make pretty decent times, but when I put new tyres I can’t take the best of them. The other riders take much more advantage so it’s clear that I have to work a lot in this area take bigger steps, because looking at the rhythm I’m not so far.”