Milwaukee Aprilia off to a good start in Free Practice at Magny-Cours
Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours, 29th September 2017
Milwaukee Aprilia got off to a good start at Magny-Cours on Friday, riders Lorenzo Savadori and Eugene Laverty ending the day P5 and P8 respectively and securing a Superpole 2 start for the team.
The morning FP1 session saw a rapid Lorenzo take a strong P3, less than four tenths behind pace-setter Rea and setting a good benchmark time. Teammate Eugene experienced a tougher session, with a small crash at Turn 6 delaying his running time before he ended the session P14.
The afternoon's FP2 session proved better for the team, with Lorenzo taking a solid P5 with a faster time than the morning and a much-improved Eugene finding over 1.5 seconds to finish P8. Their combined times were good enough to secure both riders slots in Saturday's Superpole 2 session, where they will fight for pole position. The threat of rain on Saturday has loomed all week, which will make FP3 and Superpole 2 very important for the team to secure good grid slots for Race 1.
Lorenzo Savadori #32 - Aprilia RSV4-RF
Free Practice 1: 1'38.235, P3
Free Practice 2: 1'38.016, P5
"I was quite happy with Free Practice today. The bike has been comfortable for me and it is working well here. Top 5 in both sessions is a good start for us, and I am happy to be in Superpole 2 again."
We still need to improve the turning of the bike a little, and I was losing a lot of time in Sector 1. We have tried some new things with the RSV4-RF today and they seem to work well, so I am confident for the weekend.
For tomorrow, I would prefer a dry race for sure. If it's wet then it is wet for all, so it will be difficult for everyone. I think there will be opportunity for some good points in the race, and we must work hard on our race pace before then."
Eugene Laverty #50 - Aprilia RSV4-RF
Free Practice 1: 1'39.792, P14
Free Practice 2: 1'38.152, P8
“The first session really wasn't good for us, I had problems with the front and rear. The front felt it was going to crash which did happen unfortunately, but we understood what the problem was between sessions though and made a huge step forward in the afternoon.
Previously with this bike it's been a delicate balance of front and rear grip, and today we found more rear grip that really let me 'hook into' the track. We were over a second a half quicker with the potential for more in FP2, so I was really happy with the progress and the team did a great job.
There's rain predicted for tomorrow which could make it a lottery for everyone. When I rode the bike in the wet earlier this year it was fantastic. The bike is very different now and we have changed it a lot in terms of weight and balance, but it's working well in the dry and I'm sure with a few tweaks we can be competitive."