Saturday, September 27, 2014

Team Drive M7 Aspar's Aoyama Qualifies 14th, Hayden 18th at MotoGP Aragon Round 14

27/09/14. 14 GP ARAGON - MOTORLAND - QP                                                                                                      

Nicky Hayden will start from sixth row on his return

DRIVE M7 Aspar rider will start from 18th position, while his teammate, Hiroshi Aoyama, will start from 14th

The MotoGP riders were flying at the Motorland Aragón circuit, with Marc Márquez setting a new pole record of 1’47.187 to smash his own record from last year (1.47.804). Two further riders Pedrosa and Iannone, also beat the previous record. Lorenzo and Iannone were the first to hold top spot in Q2, until Marquez improved to lead by six tenths. The Catalan pushed hard, showing again that Motorland is one of his favorite circuits. But the performance of the other top riders gave him more work to do, and Pedrosa, with just two minutes to go, set another record. Marquez responded again pulling another three tenths out of the bag. His best time of 1’47.187 is a new Motorland record and the Honda riders are looking strong at the front of the grid. 

Just seeing him back on track riding, and improving in every session, is already extremely positive. Nicky Hayden has been able to ride for two days without discomfort, improving his pace in each session to set his fastest time (1’49.835) of the weekend so far in Q1. The last free practice was marked by improved feelings, but not in Q1, where the DRIVE M7 Aspar rider noticed that his bike slid more than normal. Nevertheless he kept improving and qualified 18th. Motivated with his return, he expects a positive race. Also hoping to finish the weekend well is teammate Hiroshi Aoyama. Yesterday he started with a lack of feeling, but today he found the key to be more comfortable on his bike. So much so that he came close to qualifying for Q2. The Japanese DRIVE M7 Aspar rider was ultimately classified in 14th position. 

Nicky Hayden 18th 1’49.835: "In the third practice session I didn’t have a good feeling and we lost a lot of time running with used tyres. However we have improved a lot and I felt more comfortable with the track temperature. We made a couple of very productive steps. But in the qualifying I couldn’t push the way I wanted. I don’t know why but the bike slid more than in the previous sessions and my feeling changed. This afternoon we will look at all our information to understand the causes, because we lost a lot of time on two specific corners, which, although less quick, the bike was sliding a lot on. We knew this wouldn’t be a simple weekend but we're still working here and that's what really matters. Tomorrow we will continue trying to push for a good race."

Hiroshi Aoyama 14th 1’49.209: "In the qualifying session we did a great job, thanks to which we got our fastest time of the weekend and nearly qualified for Q2. But the Ducati riders improved a lot in the last sector, so we missed out. Nevertheless we are happy because we have made a lot of progress from yesterday to today. Now the configuration of the bike ride helps me to ride comfortably, so I hope we can keep these feelings for tomorrow. Overall we are pretty clear, only the race tyres leave us with some doubts. The positive thing is that we could go out and race with any of the two compounds we have in mind. We’ll wait until tomorrow to make a decision."


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