21 February 2014
Jerez Moto2 Test: Tech 3 closes the gap
"The gap to fifth position is not even half a second, which is a good position to start from for the final test" - Marcel Schrotter.
The Tech 3 Moto2 team's all-new line-up of Marcel Schrotter and Álex Mariñelarena concluded the second pre-season at Jerez within 1.2s of the top.
That may only have been good enough for 14th and 20th respectively on the ultra-close timesheets, but it marked a clear improvement relative to the +1.9s per lap best by a Mistral 610 rider in last year's Spanish Grand Prix qualifying and race.
“Altogether, I'm pretty happy with how this test went,” said Schrotter, whose best lap was 1.040s from the pace setting Kalex of Mika Kallio. “The gap to fifth position is not even half a second, which is a good position to start from for the final test here in three weeks.
“Despite the weather not being ideal, we managed to work through our test schedule on the last day, which was very important especially after the time we lost in Valencia. We tried numerous setup modifications and made some really good progress.
“At the beginning of the test we concentrated especially on improving the turning of the bike, which I'm really happy with now. Today, I did my first long run, as we wanted to collect data about my feeling with the bike on used tyres.”
Mariñelarena, preparing for his first full-time Moto2 season, was just a fraction behind his team-mate.
“This was a positive test for us. On the first day, the team and I worked on the turning of the bike, which we improved a lot and I am happy about. On Wednesday, there was an issue with the rear tyre which kept spinning a lot, but today we solved this and I improved my times quickly after.
“The bike felt very good and the gap to first place is only just over a second. This test was a steady improvement, after 180 laps in three test days, we are going home happy. We have improved our CEV pole by six tenths of a second."
Tech 3 team owner Herve Poncharal added: “I'm really confident, even if this test has shown once again how competitive this category is, with 20 riders within one second at one point. However we have a strong team and will give our all to be up there and fight for consistent top ten finishes.”
The third and final official test will commence back at Jerez on the 11th of March.
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