Tough qualifing for Red Bull KTM at San Marino

Posted on Sep 09, 2017 by George Penny

In the heart of the 'Motor Valley' in Italy where so many automotive and motorcycle companies are based, Misano today has seen qualifying for round 13 of the 18 race MotoGP Championship. the weather tomorrow and if it will rain as the Misano track is very tricky in the wet.

Misano was one of the circuits where the Red Bull KTM Factory MotoGP team had tested at during the week of Silverstone, so a baseline setting had been set as the weekend started but with slippery conditions yesterday following rain meant that feedback from the surface was different from the test. Pol Espargaro flew in qualifying and was about to start his final fast lap but toppled off at Turn 2 on his last run. He was on his feet in seconds, uninjured and will start 17th in tomorrow's race. Bradley Smith had traffic and some yellow flag problems in his qualifying session so was limited to a 22nd place. Both KTM RC16s have been quick in acceleration and top speed this weekend while the team works on the front setting.

Bradley Smith (Factory Rider MotoGP):
"I was quite happy with today with the race pace in FP4. I could do the lap time on both sets of tyres so that was good as we've covered ourselves for tomorrow. In qualifying I wanted to do three laps but people had rolled off after two then on the second run there was a yellow flag. I feel more competitive today than yesterday and feel that the race – wet or dry – I'm looking forward to it. I stood on the podium the last time I raced here so I'm confident whatever the weather."

Sebastian Risse (Technical Director MotoGP):
"Today is again proof that this year is so close in terms of times but a gap of around one second is something achievable for us and then the position is whatever is in qualifying and the race. This is our base target over the last few races and something we've been hitting. We are good with acceleration here, as we have done all season in fact with both riders, but we've been limited a little by movement of the tyre and getting the front of the bike to work to our liking. It just seems to be that, rather than an on goingproblem; conditions to get the front working."

Races: September 10, 2017 – Moto3 11:00 | Moto2 12:20 CET | MotoGP 14:00

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