Smith explores setup and tyre options on day one at Phillip Island
Posted on Oct 17, 2014 by Monster Yamaha Tech 3
Bradley Smith made progressive steps forward as well by exploring setup and tyre options on the Yamaha YZR-M1 before finishing in 11th position in the tightly contested afternoon session in Australia.
The British star opened the first practice at the Phillip Island circuit by riding to 8th in the morning under sunny conditions at the coastal track. As the afternoon practice began, Smith got down to business and remained determined in setting himself up to qualify strongly ahead of the battle on Sunday where he intends to fight into the top five.
The British rider completed the FP2 practice with a personal fastest lap of 1’30.313, which was a steady improvement of over three tenths of a second from his morning time. In addition, the lap was merely 0.359 from fifth place. Smith’s start today leaves him optimistic and confident of lowering the gap to the leading bikes further tomorrow, before fighting to qualify as high as possible during the all-important qualifying session in the afternoon.
Bradley Smith: – Position: 11th – Time: 1'30.313
"Overall, the first day has been quite constructive for me at Phillip Island. We were able to try the new Bridgestone tyre which is available here and they’ve done a good job to create it, as it looks like it will last the full race distance, which is obviously very important. However, it does require a slightly different setup to what we are used to, in order to accommodate the tyre, so we’ve been trying to learn and understand exactly what it needs. Yet, in general I am pleased with what we have achieved. I was consistent but unfortunately I finished in 11th as it was a close session, so tomorrow we will look to improve straight away in order to get straight into Q2. In my opinion, the track has lost a bit of grip compared to last year, but with the good weather and less wind today, we’ve still been able to perform well. My aim is to ride a 1’29 lap time tomorrow, so with a bit more improvement I am confident that I can qualify well."