Bradley 4th despite clutch problem
Posted on Oct 01, 2010 by Aspar Press
Five local wildcards boosted the entry list for the Grand Prix of Japan, which got underway this afternoon with the opening free practice for the 125cc class. However, the usual suspects dominated proceedings with Bancaja Aspar rider Nico Terol closely chased throughout by championship rival Marc Márquez. Their task wasn't made any easier by heavy rain yesterday, which left the track dirty for an otherwise dry and warm first day of action.
A dirty track wasn't going to distract Terol today, the Spaniard leading for all but a couple of laps of the opening session, finishing off with three flying laps that secured top spot overnight. Terol was particularly impressive in T4 and his best effort of 1'59.882 made him the only rider to break the 2 minute barrier. With his Aprilia clocking the day's top speed (221.9km/h) Nico is confident of a challenge for pole position tomorrow. His team-mate Bradley Smith lost a lot of track time due to a clutch problem but managed to lap fourth fastest, just half a second off the pace of his team-mate.
4th Bradley Smith 2.00.438 (15 laps): "We lost a lot of time with the clutch problem but thankfully even though I wasn't able to put a consistent rhythm together today I was fast when I was out there. I need a few more laps but the engine of my Aprilia is solid and working well. We need to work more on the suspenion because the track was dirty today and I think a lot of riders were struggling for grip. I am satisfied with our performance for the first day but we have a lot to improve on tomorrow."