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Phillip Island MotoGP Test: Smith caught out at ‘beneficial’ corner

“This corner was beneficial for me in 2014 in the race when I got my podium but not today!” – Bradley Smith.
Bradley Smith was quick to see the amusing side after falling at the same corner where he had been handed a podium in the 2014 Australian MotoGP.

Smith was elevated to his first premier-class rostrum when Cal Crutchlow lost the front of his Ducati, while almost straight upright, under braking for the Honda hairpin (turn 4) on the final lap of the race.

That fall was blamed on a mixture of cold conditions and an overly hard compound on the former Bridgestone front tyre.

The same kind of fall was seen many times on the final day of this week's Phillip Island test, held in similar weather but now using the new Michelin rubber - and with Smith one of the victims.

"I was a bit unlucky today because I did the famous turn 4 crash. This corner was beneficial for me in 2014 in the race when I got my podium but not today unfortunately!” he smiled. “The good news is that I don't have too much pain or any serious injuries and when I remounted, I was able to ride quite comfortably.

“Aside from this, it was a positive day, although it was a shame about the cold weather and the rain in the middle of the day, which affected our front tyre choice. Yet, we still got through our testing programme so I feel confident enough to say that we have a really solid base setting as we go into the final three days of testing at Qatar.

“I am happy to say that the electronics are really positive at the moment and the team and I are doing a solid job in understanding that. There are still some areas that we need to work on, specifically with the acceleration, but that's the same for everyone I think.”

Nevertheless, having only been ranked 16th best on Friday, and 13th overall, Smith knows he must 'push harder' at the final test.

“I am satisfied with what we accomplished here, but we need to push harder next time because 16th is not enough for us and for our sponsors,” he admitted. “Having said that, I don't think the results matter too much at the moment, it's when the season starts that it counts, so I look forward to carrying on the positive work in Qatar as we inch closer to the first race of the year.”

Smith and team-mate Pol Espargaro have been boosted by a fully seamless gearbox for 2016, plus the news that factory Yamaha stars Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo have selected to start the new season using a bike similar to 2015 spec - as used at Tech 3.

Espargaro was eighth quickest on the final day and ninth overall.



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Smith, Phillip Island MotoGP test, February 2016
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H1h2h3h4h5

February 20, 2016 8:55 PM

Pol and Brad aren't riding equivalent kit to Lorenzo and Rossi. The factory boys' bike has been adapted to suit the Michelins, has a full seamless gearbox and has a **** tonne of people working on the Electronics.

hoppy

February 21, 2016 10:20 AM

TrueFan: If Pol and Bradders are riding equivalent kit to Lorenzo and Rossi, I look forward to some direct challenges by Tech 3 riders to the factory boys. At least, I live in hope...
Now THAT would be great to see. Really like young Brad,he is a good kid who works hard.



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