Challenging start for Milwaukee Aprilia in Laguna Seca Race 1
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, 9th July 2017
Milwaukee Aprilia riders Eugene Laverty and Lorenzo Savadori delivered solid point scoring performances in Race 2 at Laguna Seca, coming home P6 and P8 respectively.
Lining up P10 after his Race 1 retirement, Eugene made a rapid start and took the fight to his rivals, battling hard with Melandri and Camier as he made his way through the field. After passing Mercado on Lap 4 for 7th, he began to chase down Torres before the Spanish rider crashed out at Turn 1. Finding a comfortable groove with his Aprilia RSV4 RF he was closing down Fores in 5th place, but ran out of laps before he could make his move.
Lorenzo joined Eugene on row 4 for the race start in P12. After a steady getaway he got stuck into the midfield fight for points, racing close behind his teammate and Camier. With improved grip in the front after a trying Race 1, Lorenzo set a consistent pace and managed his tyres well. After problems for riders ahead of him, Lorenzo tried hard to chase down Mercado for 7th but ultimately settled for 8th place and 8 valuable points.
The WorldSBK series now heads into its summer break. The team will return to the track at Lausitzring in Germany later this month for a two-day test , ahead of Round 9 at the same circuit in August. With a busy schedule for the important test, they will work hard to further hone and improve the RSV4 RF ahead of the final five race weekends of 2017.
Eugene Laverty #50
Grid: P10 Race: P6, 10 points
“It was a positive result today considering that we had to start from P10, and the reverse grid rules didn't help us this time. I had some good scraps and I felt pretty comfortable on the bike.
The big improvement today was the front tyre; yesterday there was some problem with it that wasn't normal, but today it functioned correctly and I was able to push a lot more.
Perhaps 5th would have been on the cards if we'd started higher, but I still think that was our best race of the year. Heading to the test at Lausitzring we have a good basis from here to work with. The improvement on the front was a big benefit as we showed here in Free Practice, and our aim is to take another big forward step with the RSV4 RF."
Lorenzo Savadori #32
Grid: P12 Race: P8, 8 points
"I'm quite happy with the result today. Even though P8 is not where we want to be, I was able to set some quick and consistent laps. When I caught the other riders I could stay in their rhythm, but I still found it hard to pass them.
We need to focus on the positives from this weekend. On Friday I struggled with the bike and rhythm, but we found some improvements and step by step I know that we can be even better for the next race.
We have a lot of work to do for the test at Lausitzring. There are some areas that we have struggled with recently that we need to make better, and I know that the team are working very hard to make sure we can improve for Germany."
Mick Shanley, Team Manager
“The outcome from the race wasn't representative of what we've achieved this weekend. Eugene has been consistently strong in Free Practice and he was fast in Superpole. Lorenzo struggled at first in practice but found speed today.
Unfortunately it seems we had a front tyre issue which didn't allow Eugene to push like he has the rest of the weekend, and ultimately ended up with him crashing, and that is something we need to investigate with Pirelli.
Lorenzo made a definite step forward today from yesterday. Superpole was a good performance from him on the race tyre, and we just need to find a little more pace and stability for him to push with. Overall it was a frustrating day after the promise shown, but we know we have speed and we'll see what we can achieve tomorrow."