Best qualifying for Red Bull KTM's Bradley Smith in Texas

Posted on Apr 23, 2017 by Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Red Bull KTM MotoGP Factory Racing Team on Sunday will contest the team’s third MotoGP race at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, another new and difficult track for the debut factory team. Bradley Smith (GBR) will start from the sixth row of the grid for Sunday’s race, but factory teammate Pol Espargaro (ESP) will start from the back after crashing out in turn two in the last minutes of the qualifying session.

The long, sweeping American circuit has 20 corners and both free practices and qualifying sessions were peppered with action and multiple crashes among riders of all three classes of the competition.

Bradley Smith (Factory Rider MotoGP):
“The pace in the front is fast and here we always knew it was going to be difficult for us. We’ve done a lot of work this weekend but finally at the right moment I think we were where we needed to be. I didn’t do the perfect lap, but it was my best of the weekend so we have to be happy with that. Tomorrow we’ll have to see what the weather is like and that will help us make the right decision about tire choice. Obviously, it’s more critical with the rear tire because at the moment it is quite cool conditions. I feel good that we can at least push on tomorrow and see what we can do. It’s going to be a long race and we know that tire degradation here is always the most difficult part. But I know the KTM is quite easy on tires, so fingers crossed Sunday will bring us even better performance, just like in the other two rounds. It is going to be 21 hard laps.”

Sebastian Risse (Technical Director MotoGP):
“For sure this track is special and it has many corners that need different things from the bike. So you need to compromise. To find this compromise you need experience, and you need kilometers on this track, so we are learning. You can see we are improving but we are not improving enough to be as close to the top in terms of lap times as at the other race weekends. But okay, I think we are going forward, we need to continue to move forward, and we’ll see how it goes tomorrow.”

Sunday, April 23, 2017 – Moto3 18:00 | Moto2 19:20 | MotoGP 21:00 CET

Results Qualifying MotoGP Circuit of the Americas 2017
1. Marc Marquez (ESP), Honda, 2:02.701 min
2. Maverick Vinales (ESP), Yamaha, +0.130 sec
3. Valentino Rossi (ITA), Honda, +0.932
4. Dani Pedrosa (ESP), Honda, +1.125
5. Johann Zarco (FRA), Yamaha, +1.187
18. Bradley Smith (GBR), KTM, +3.517
21. Pol Espargaro (ESP), KTM, +4.860

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