MotoGP » Bradley Smith:

Estoril puncture left me feeling deflated...

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Hi everyone!

The best way to get over a big disappointment is to get back out there as soon as possible and ride it out of your system. Luckily, I've been able to do just that.

We arrived home at 9pm on Sunday night, after flying back from Portugal where a rear puncture kept me out of the points. And by early Monday morning, we were back on the road to Le Mans in France.

We loaded my dad's 600cc road bike into the van, put the Estoril disappointment behind us and drove off for a couple of days of track-day riding at the circuit that stages the French Grand Prix next weekend.

I've been very fortunate in terms of mechanical problems during my grand prix career, but it's still a real blow when it happens. Race day had started so well when I led the morning warm-up on a damp track and, despite starting from the fifth row of the grid, I was confident of a good result.

I made a decent start and a top six finish, at least, seemed very much on the cards – but the bike felt a little strange in those early laps and, although I was constantly making up places, something was not right.

On the eighth lap the bike began moving all over the place and it just got worse. I knew we had big problems but didn't know what they were until my pit board told me to come in.

The team were ready with both new front and rear wheels, which they changed, although it was obvious to them when I stopped that a rear tyre puncture was causing the problem.

Apparently a cracked rim on the rear wheel punctured the tyre. I went back out two laps down and completed the race, because my job is to cross that finishing line whatever the circumstances.

I felt sorry for the team because they had worked so hard all weekend and it was nobody's fault. It was one of those things that nobody could have predicted, but of course we were all very disappointed.

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Bradley Smith cycling
Bradley Smith cycling
Smith, Portuguese Moto2 Race 2011
Smith, Portuguese Moto2 Race 2011
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Smith, Portuguese Moto2 2011
Smith, Portuguese Moto2 2011
Smith, Moto2, Portuguese MotoGP 2011
Smith, Portuguese Moto2 Race 2011
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Smith, Moto2, Portuguese MotoGP 2011
Smith, Moto2, Portuguese MotoGP 2011
Smith, Portuguese Moto2 2011
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Bradley Smith
KTM mechanic`s pit lane helmets, Grand Prix Of The Americas 2017
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MM - Unregistered

May 04, 2011 5:22 PM

I hope both Bradley Smith AND Scott Redding have better luck next time out at Le Mans. With Cal Crutchlow doing a good job on the Tech 2 MotoGP bike, Smith has an inspiration and big incentive to do well in their Moto2 team.

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