After the Gran Premio Movistar de Aragon, it wasn’t quite time to pack up for the trip to Thailand just yet – with a one-day official test for Moto2™ and Moto3™ at MotorLand Aragon. Some of the biggest names stayed behind, but there was one common thread for everyone: the wind.
Conditions were bright and sunny but track action was seriously hampered by the high winds, not least for the Moto3™ runners present. Sky Racing Team VR46 stayed to test with Dennis Foggia and Nicolo Bulega and planned to work on setup, but in the end it was only a handful of laps given the conditions although Foggia remains at the track to test for KTM on Tuesday. Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Darryn Binder didn’t manage much useful track time either, and Albert Arenas (Angel Nieto Team) was the only other Moto3™ man present – concentrating on the front end working with KTM.
The wind was the narrative of the day even for the Moto2™ runners and despite their heavier weight. It was a bigger contingent from the intermediate class on site, headlined by EG 0,0 Marc VDS and Red Bull KTM Ajo, with Speed Up Racing Team, Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2, Kiefer Racing, SAG Team, Nashi Argan SAG Team, Italtrans Racing Team, Forward Racing Team and RW Racing joining them on track.
The likes of Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2 worked on setup and like many, didn’t have any new parts to test and were more focused on refinements ahead of the flyaways. EG 0,0 Marc VDS riders Alex Marquez and Joan Mir both lamented the wind, although Marquez was one who found some positives – saying it’s a good preview for Phillip Island, where the wind is often a big player during the race weekend. Marquez tried tyres for next season too but the team downed tools by early afternoon due to conditions.
The race winner from the weekend, Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo), and Championship-contending teammate Miguel Oliveira both also complained about the wind, with Binder explaining the conditions even bore some similarities to an FP1 session in Qatar due to dust on track. Initially intending to stop very early, conditions did improve a bit and they did some more work – mainly focused on setup for this season and then early testing of some other components with an eye further on the future. That future was one of the key talking points of the test.
On Monday, RW Racing had Grand Prix paddock veteran Alex De Angelis on track on their NTS chassis with Triumph engine in preparation for 2019, and Forward Racing Team had Lorenzo Lanzi out on their MV Agusta. The torque and power have been key talking points about the new engine, which was officially “handed over” during the Grand Prix.
Red Bull KTM Ajo, meanwhile, stay at MotorLand to test with the Triumph engine. Brad Binder, who has already ridden the bike albeit briefly, with have a lot more time in the saddle – with two race wins already in 2018 hinting at what the South African will doubtless be targeting next season.
After activities conclude at MotorLand, it’s time to head for Thailand. There will be more action at Chang International Circuit in Buriram from the 5th to 7th October.
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