13 November 2014
Valencia MotoGP Test: Deficit 'unacceptable' says Redding
“It's nowhere near acceptable because I expected to be maybe one second [slower] but in the end I was 1.6s and that was really pushing my best" - Scott Redding.
Britain's Scott Redding described finishing 1.6 seconds off the pace at the Valencia MotoGP test as 'nowhere near acceptable' as the Marc VDS rider continues to adapt to the RC213V.
Redding is struggling in particular with utilising the full power of the Honda but is aware of where the problem lies and is confident a solution can be found at the next shakedown in Malaysia in February.
The 21-year-old was 21st fastest and 1.6s off the fastest time set by Marc Marquez as Redding lapped slower than his fastest times on the Open class RCV1000R at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Spain.
However, one big positive was his performance in Tuesday's rain-lashed session as Redding ended the day third quickest.
“The wet run was really good, I'm very happy, but the dry run – completely different. Really we didn't know where we were struggling and that was the problem because I couldn't tell the guys how or why we were struggling,” he said.
“I was trying to find people on the track to see what the difference was because I felt pretty good, but actually I wasn't. The front was working well, the rear was working well, but actually we were too low in the rear so we couldn't get all the horsepower down and we were always wheelieing. We were having to reduce the power, so actually we were losing time because we couldn't use the full potential of the bike.
“I expected to be a bit closer because I was faster with the Open bike than I was with this bike, so it kind of sucks a little bit,” he added.
“But I understood more when I followed Dani [Pedrosa], because the way he exited the corner and the way the bike pulled him out of the corner was unreal and it definitely wasn't happening to me. So we have some work to do for Malaysia but with one bike we were short for time.”
Redding is also striving to improve his feeling on the bike and says his extra weight and height is posing a few conundrums.
“We're 90 per cent comfortable, the seat was really good but the tank is quite a difficult thing to do because it's quite short and thin, but overall today I started to feel better,” he said.
“But we do need to make some modifications to the tank to make it a bit longer for me but apart from that it's pretty good. I'm a lot different to all the other Honda riders so we're going to have to make the bike balance a little different also.
“I'm on average 10 kilos heavier and quite a bit taller so it makes quite a lot of difference because my weight on the bike is making a difference.”
Another positive for Redding was Honda's seamless shift gearbox, which the young Briton says worked especially well in the wet on Tuesday.
“It was really good, really smooth. It made a big difference in the wet because with angle you can still shift and use the power of the bike, so that was a positive point,” he said.
“The traction control was more consistent and helped the power to be a bit more smoother [compared to RCV1000R], but that was it really. It's not a big difference, just a bit more consistent for a race distance.”
Looking ahead to the next test at Sepang after the winter holiday – pencilled in for February 4-7 – Redding is determined to close the deficit to the leading factory riders.
“It's nowhere near acceptable because I expected to be maybe one second [slower] but in the end I was 1.6s and that was really pushing my best,” he said.
“I can see the time I'm losing so it won't be too much of a problem if we get it right and improve the bike. Valencia is not my favourite circuit and Sepang is different, so anything can happen with a new bike.
“This was our first test and we're still learning, but the team is working well together and now I'm looking forward to the next test in Malaysia.”
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