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Aragon, Marquez, Redding
2 October 2013
In his latest blog for
, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rookie Bradley Smith reviews Sunday's Aragon MotoGP, discusses the Marc Marquez incident and Scott Redding's Moto2 title fight...
To be 31 seconds behind the leader at the end of the race is back in our ball park. To be able to beat the factory Ducatis was my Yamaha technicians' target when they had their Wednesday meeting - although they did not tell me until after the race.
It was my first seventh place of the season and considering everything it was a good points scoring ride for us. It was vital to build that foundation once again before we disappear to the flyways.
We still have problems in the early stages with a full fuel load and we compared our lap times with Andrea Dovizioso's on the bike last year and it seems to be a fundamental problem with this Yamaha.
We have seen three or four developments this year and we are going in the right direction. Everything is looking very positive with more developments for 2014, starting with the Valencia test in November, which fills me with great optimism for next year.
We had a really tough day at Aragon on Friday but really turned it round on Saturday by qualifying in eighth place. Despite the disappointment I knew on Friday there was potential and we probably found more than we expected and it was a bonus.
It was a huge relief after a couple tough race weekends and it was great to find that outright lap time.
We started with the Misano setting and worked round it to suit Aragon. Sometimes I can't believe just how much the smallest of details can make such a big difference, but that's MotoGP and it's a science project.
I have not yet seen the Marquez/Pedrosa incident but going from past experiences never have I seen Marquez do something recently that deserved a penalty on its own. All of Marc's race mistakes are always racing incidents and he does well to keep himself out of harm's way, but all of them put together deserve some sort of penalty.
What penalty that is I don't know because I'm not Race Direction, but Jorge Lorenzo has said that until he was made to think about his actions on the track with a race ban he was not going to change.
Jorge was the same type of person as Marc, getting caught up in situations and comings together. That race ban was the only thing that started making him think about his actions on the race track and I think Marc should do the same. He needs to allow himself a little bit, one or two per cent of margin, to avoid these incidents because it's happened too often.
I'm sure Race Direction will make the right decision and it will be a talking point at our safety commission meeting in Sepang. The riders have no say in the final verdict but of course it will be discussed away from the media.
Scott Redding's ride in the Moto2 race showed somebody with the talent and the determination to deserve the World Championship. To start from 13th and keep his head up to be sixth at the end of the first lap and to take that challenge to second and then fight with his Championship rival takes massive credit.
Four races to go he has a real chance of that World title.
I'm going back to Oxford after Aragon to get packed for Malaysia, Australia and Japan. I'm going to Malaysia early, like I did for the winter tests, to acclimatise to the heat and humidity. The Sepang weekend will be very interesting for me and the team because of those pre-season tests.
I'm learning to live life on my own in Andorra and realising there is no magic fairy godmother to pick up your cereal bowl when you have finished your breakfast. If you put it down it's still there when you come back showing what an amazing job that Mum's do.
Apart from the washing up, I had a great time there before leaving for Aragon. I went trials riding with Leon Camier, Andy Walker and Simon Crafar and really explored Andorra riding on some amazing trails and seeing some fantastic sights.
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