14/11/17 Valencia MotoGP Test – Circuit Ricardo Tormo
The 2018 MotoGP season started for the Reale Avintia Racing team at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit today, with its new riders Tito Rabat and Xavi Siméon. The debut was very different for both riders: For the 2014 Moto2 World Champion Rabat, it was only a change of bike manufacturer, while for Siméon, everything was new.
Tito Rabat completed a total of 70 laps and, despite suffering a small crash in the morning, his feelings with the Ducati Desmosedici GP17 were very positive. The Spaniard finished the first day 13th, just 1.4s behind the fastest rider, but he didn’t really push hard to set a fast lap time. Tomorrow, Rabat plans to test the different fairing configurations available and to work on the set-up of the bike to improve the turning in the slower corners.
For his teammate Xavi Siméon, everything was new today, the bike, the brakes, the tyres, the team… The Belgian rider finished the day with a big smile and, although he could not do many laps due to the discomfort in his shoulder, he was able to discover the essentials of his Ducati Desmosedici GP16. He was impressed by the carbon brakes and the top speed, but what has really left him frozen is the incredible grip of the Michelin tyres.
“I had very positive feelings on my first day with the Ducati and with the team. With the team, I felt good from the beginning and we connected very well, but above all, I love the bike. I rode by myself all day and I managed to clock a good lap time, but the best part was that I was able to keep a good and constant rhythm. Today we didn’t use many tyres and I’ve just been riding around the circuit to get the feeling with the bike. I was impressed by the power of the Ducati, but also by the smooth power delivery. Tomorrow, I want to keep improving little by little and if I get down to a lap time of 1’30, it would be perfect.”
“The first day was incredible. I’m very happy and excited with my MotoGP debut. The team gave me a lot of confidence and since yesterday they explained every detail of the bike. Today, we took things calmly and step by step. I experienced the carbon brakes for the first time, which was incredible, incredible, but we also worked a lot with electronics. All in all, it has been a great day. I didn’t complete many laps because my shoulder hurts more than I thought, but I’ll rest tonight to come back stronger tomorrow. I hope to continue enjoying and progressing. My technical team is incredible and they are helping me a lot. The power of the bike is impressive, but the most incredible thing is the grip of the Michelin tyres, especially the front. I think it will be hard for me to find the limit.”