2012 Valencia Moto2 And Moto3 Test Day 3 Press Releases

Press releases from a selection of the teams after the Moto2 and Moto3 test at Valencia:


The three-day test held at the “Ricardo Tormo” circuit of Cheste, Valencia, ended today, as the teams get ready for the beginning of 2012 Moto2 World Championship.

Speed Master riders had the chance to get back to the track after the winter break and the sessions at disposal were essential in order to develop a good feeling with the Speed Up machines. Andrea Iannone rode, therefore, the evolution of the bike that he used during his first year in Moto2, back in 2010: the rider from Abruzzo took advantage of this test to complete a consistent number of laps and to achieve a good initial performance with the Speed Up bike.

It was an important shakedown test for Mike Di Meglio, too, who could get to know his new team and start working for the season, which is about to start. The Frenchman, despite some complications on the third day, began positively the year, improving session after session.

Andrea Iannone #29 - 1’35.8

“I’m very happy with how these three days went. These were some very useful tests to get back on the bike, we also had the chance to get back a good feeling step by step and start working again with the practice and race rhythm. We did a good job, I’m satisfied with how the bike is performing and with the information we gathered. Now we just have to wait for the test in Jerez next week, hopefully we’ll keep working as we did here and we’ll manage to get some more data that can be useful in the future. I’d like to thank the team for such a good beginning of the season and for the work done during these days.”

Mike di Meglio #63 - 1’37.7

“I’m happy with how this first test went with the team. During the first day we completed many laps, but the second day was when we effectively put in some constructive work. Today I crashed, I’m sorry because I was improving my feeling with the bike, I was putting in some good laps as yesterday, but I wasn’t struggling at all. We have to work to get a better balance of the bike, but I think we can achieve some good results because I like riding this bike and I get along with the team.”


Valencia, Friday 10 February 2012: Mahindra Racing today successfully completed the first official test of its new 2012 Moto3 race bike, the Mahindra MGP30 (pronounced three-oh). The 250cc four-stroke machine will contest MotoGP’s new Moto3 World Championship commencing in Qatar on 8 April. The three-day test, at Spain’s Ricardo Tormo circuit just outside Valencia, gave riders Danny Webb and Marcel Schrötter a chance to evaluate the performance of the brand new Mahindra against its rivals in the exciting new class.

No official times were available from a chilly Valencia where more than 30 Moto3 riders (representing six different manufacturers) took to the track along with a similar number of Moto2 entries. However, Mahindra Racing timed Webb with a best lap of 1’43.2 from a total of 98 completed over the three days, placing him well up the unofficial order. Despite a small off today and a few technical niggles, the 20-year-old British rider was in buoyant mood at the test’s conclusion.

Danny Webb: “This has been a very positive experience on the whole. From day one I felt very comfortable on the bike. I think the four-stroke suits me better and is more fun to ride. The bike handles really well, it’s great through the corners and has pretty good top speed. We just need to get some more out of the bottom and middle of the engine and then I am confident we can run up at the front. I had a few small problems this afternoon, but that is no surprise when the bike is so new and I am sure they can be sorted out before our next test. The team and Mahindra have done a very good job to get us to this position.“

Schrötter (19) only rode for one day having just completed a six-week military training camp in his native Germany - part of a special military service designed for elite athletes. Desperate to get time in the saddle of his new MGP30, Marcel left the camp and dashed straight to Valencia, finally arriving at 5am on Friday morning after a series of weather-related travel delays. The cool conditions in Valencia were brushed off by the former German 125cc Champion who had been sleeping in a tent in -16°c with the German army! With the simple aim of familiarising himself with the new bike, Marcel completed a total of 37 laps today with a best time of 1’46.2.

Marcel Schrötter: “I am pretty tired, but it was important for me to get here and have one day on the bike. Having missed the test in Italy and the first two days here, I just needed to ride and get the feeling for the new bike. It is a big difference from the two-stroke, but I think with a couple more days I’ll have forgotten all about 125s.

“Today was definitely not about lap times. My first impression is that the chassis and top speed are good. We need to work a bit on acceleration, but I am sure that we’ll make a step forward at next week’s test and then we have a month before the final test to iron out any problems.”

Mufaddal Choonia, Mahindra Racing Team Principal: “It was very exciting to see the culmination of a great deal of hard work coming together on the track. Alongside our development of the new bike we have made some changes to the team structure and have some new personnel. I am pleased to report that the bike, team and riders are all functioning very well! The riders are very positive about the handling of the bike. In terms of the engine, we are displaying good top speed and, despite a few niggles, had no major problems. It is actually good to get some problems here as we can quickly address them. That is what testing is for. We still have a lot of work to do but, considering that the MGP30 has now done a total of only four days on track, I am very satisfied and confident that come Qatar we shall be up there competing towards the front. Big thanks are due to all of the team and to our technical partners, Engines Engineering and Oral Engineering.”

Also present in Valencia was the team’s Italian test rider Riccardo Moretti. The 27-year-old 2009 Italian national 125cc Champion will contest the 2012 Italian championship for Mahindra Racing alongside 19-year-old Indian rider Sarath Kumar. “The Italian Championship is a great opportunity for us to accelerate development of the MGP30 in a competitive environment utilising Riccardo’s experience,” explained Mufaddal Choonia. “At the same time, Sarath will compete using our excellent 2011 125cc machine. We are delighted to have the capacity to offer an Indian rider the opportunity to develop his talent and skills in a high-profile national series.”

Repsol riders satisfied at close of Valencia test

After three days of testing, Viñales, Oliveira and Márquez conclude run-out at Ricardo Tormo circuit

The first 2012 preseason test for the Repsol Moto3 riders concluded today at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia, with the trio continuing to adapt favourably to their new bikes. There were plenty of laps put down on the cold asphalt on Friday, with valuable information regarding set-ups the end result. This three day test may have come to an end, but the pace isn’t letting up and the riders will be out on track as early as next week -namely the 16th, 17th and 18th of February- at the Jerez circuit.

Temperatures were slightly higher in Valencia today, allowing the riders an earlier opportunity to get out on track than on Wednesday and Thursday. Experimentation with settings was the order of the day. Viñales, Oliveira and Márquez continued their focus on suspension, chassis and engine improvement, aware of the hard work that lies ahead before the start of the season.

The riders left Valencia in a positive mood, happy with the devlopment experienced over the past three days. They will be back onboard their Moto3 mounts next week looking for more of the same.

Maverick Viñales 1:41.0, 66 laps, 264 km.

"This was a very complete three days, focusing on finetuning the chasis and suspension. I’m really happy with the development that we have made with solid steps forward. The bike feels good and the chassis and suspension are at a really high standard now. I felt a little rusty on the first day back from the winter break, but I felt the same way today as I did after the race and test here in Valencia last year.

We will continue with our chasis and suspension work in Jerez next week. We need some improvement made to the engine, as we lack acceleration and two or three km/h of top speed, but a positive to highlight is that it is a progressive Honda engine. Now it’s time for a few days rest and to think about Jerez".

Miguel Oliveira 1:41.8, 60 laps, 240 km.

"These have been three very positive days, in which we have tried out many things. We did a lot of laps today and managed the same times as yesterday. We weren’t able to go as fast as we had wanted, but we are nonetheless very satisfied. The team have put in a lot of hard work, so hats off to them. We still have a lot to do and a lot of room for improvement, so we can’t wait for Jerez".

Álex Márquez 1:43.7, 60 laps, 240 km.

"This was the most encouraging of the three days here in Valencia; I didn’t crash and was able to put in a lot of laps. I was also able to take things more calmly as a result. We tried some things that will help us next week and in the long-term future. I am satisfied with the overall findings of this test".

Valencia Test went positive for Max Neukirchner and Kiefer Racing

Despite the low temperatures and therefore difficult conditions on the Ricardo Tormo circuit near Valencia, Spain the first official test of the season 2012 went positive for Max Neukirchner and his new Team.

The 28-years-old, who already rides his second season in the Moto2 world championship this year, was able to improve his performance at each of the three test days and is very satisfied with the results he achieved on the Grand Prix course. Except for the low temperatures there were only two small crashes worse complaining about in these three days of testing. The first crash happened on the first day when Neukirchner slipped on oil on the track that was lost from one of his comrades earlier on the day and the second crash was caused due to the low temperatures of the tarmac as Neukirchner went out again quite late, when the sun was already gone, which caused a massive drop of temperatures. Nevertheless the ambitious Youngster wanted to try some more settings with his bike in the late afternoon and had to pay for his ambition with a minor crash.

The Kiefer Racing Team did use the three test days to their full range and Neukirchner is happy with the improvements he was able to make. It also meant that he bettered his lap time from a 1’37.5 to a 1’36.7 in these three days. The half-second that is still missing to reach the top will be attacked during the second official test that will take place from 16th to 18th of February in Jerez de la Frontera, Andalusia.

Max Neukirchner, Kiefer Racing, 28 years:

“We used every second of the three test days and tried as much as possible and that gave me a really good and closer feeling with the bike. Every time I left the pit box we were able to improve a bit more. I am very happy with the test and I was able to develop my feeling with the bike a lot. I really like the way my new team works, we work very well together and they know what I need. The two little crashes were a pity, but there was nothing I could have done to avoid any of them. I didn’t risk anything and I achieved my lap times comfortable without pressure, so I am quite confident we can find that missing half-second. Now I have a week off to prepare for the next official test and in Jerez I will continue where I stopped in Valencia. I just hope the temperatures in Jerez do feel more like Spain this time.”


The final day of testing at Valencia today saw bright weather despite low ambient and track temperatures, giving Team Gresini's Moto2 pair Gino Rea and Rattapark Wilairot plenty of opportunity to work on the set-up of their machines and Showa suspension settings, despite a pair of crashes for both. The British rider once again showed his excellent potential whilst his Thai colleague Wilairot gained a feel for the 2012 version Moriwaki chassis. Rea completed 48 laps with a best time of 1’36.4 whilst Wilairot clocked a 1’37.8 as his best effort of 54 laps. Niccolò Antonelli enjoyed another positive day on board the Honda Moto3 machine, with his confidence and knowledge improving in tandem with every lap. After 68 laps he finished the day with a best time of 1’43.2. The next date in the team's diary is another test at Jerez next week, with Rea, Wilairot and Antonelli all scheduled to ride.

Cortese tops lap times on new KTM Moto3 bike

Sandro Cortese of the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 Team was fastest on the Valencia circuit for the third consecutive day in the first round of official tests for the new MotoGP class.

Cortese also managed to improve his lap times each day as teams running KTM and KTM-driven bikes continue to work hard on their pre-season preparations. “I had a very good feeling right from the first day to the end of tests and we improved a lot as we get the bike ready for the season. With KTM as the factory team we have a lot of support and I think I am in a better position than in previous years,” Cortese said at the conclusion of the training.

While there is still much work to be done before the opening MotoeGP in Qatar, it was nevertheless a positive outing for all five riders of the new KTM factory bike and the four riders on the KALEX-KTM-driven machine. They dominated fast lap times in the top ten and were all up among the top third of the field of 33 riders.

After last week’s preliminary tests and the three days at Valencia Aki Ajo, Team Manager of the Red Bull KTM Ajo nevertheless took the cautious approach saying he was “quite happy”. “Now we have had five full days of tests and we have had no technical problems. That is the most important. But we must remember that we are in the early states of our preparation. All the teams are just beginning and we will really have a better idea of where we stand after a month.”

Alex Baumgärtel, constructor of the K KALEX-KTM bikes said the tests had been “very positive”. All our riders managed to improve their times over the three days and we were without any technical problems. We can say we’re in the ballpark. It’s been very positive for us.”

While weather for the first two days of tests was very cold, Friday was kinder for the teams. Cortese managed to put in a lap time fourth tenths faster than his best on Thursday to come away satisfied with his final day. Alberto Moncayo (KALEX-KTM), Danny Kent (KTM) and Luis Salom (KALEX-KTM) all reported a time of 1’41.2 to be third, fourth and fifth on the unofficial time list on Friday. Niklas Ajo (KTM), Hector Faubel (KALEX-KTM) were placed sixth and seventh, Zulfahmi Khairuddin (KTM) and Brad Binder (KALEX-KTM) were ninth and tenth and Australian Red Bull Rookies Cup graduate Arthur Sissis (KTM) finished thirteenth.

The next Moto3 testing will begin next week in Jerez, Spain, where the Andalusian track will host three test days (Thursday, Friday and Saturday).

The WorldWideRace team concluded in the afternoon a three-day test. It was the first official gathering of the season for the brand new Moto3 class. As far as WorldWideRace was concerned, it has been also the first time the new bike, equipped with an engine by Oral, was given a proper run. On the eve of the testing days the team had organized a shake down in Cartagena (Spain) that went smooth, and so the Valencia meeting was a much-awaited verification. During the three days Giulian Pedone, the team's rider, completed 81 laps, with a best time of 1'45”8, set on the second day.

Very cold mornings, that made possible to hit the track only after 11 am, and the necessity to share the circuit with the Moto2 class left just few hours each day to riders and technicians to run their machines. The team collected precious data, that in the next days will be analyzed to prepare further tests.


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