Scott Redding admitted he was expecting Aprilia’s RS-GP to be a little easier to manoeuver than the Ducati he rode for two years, but found several keys areas that will require an adjusted approach at the two-day MotoGP shakedown at Valencia.

On Wednesday evening the Englishman felt the bike was quite aggressive, and explained it needs to be overridden when braking to extract its maximum. Seeing how new team-mate Aleix Espargaro does so was impressive, he said.

Ending the test 19th, two seconds back of Marc Marquez’s fastest time was not ideal. But Redding feels a brief rest after an exhausting recent schedule will do him good. Going to a new track, like Jerez, where he will test next week, should provide him with a “fresh page to start from.”

“I expected it a little bit easier than the Ducati, but it was, not more difficult, but the engine style and chassis style was quite a lot different,” said Redding. “Like when I went from the Honda to the Ducati, they were sort of similar, in a way, but it was easier when I went to Ducati. Now it's like the characteristic of the engine is coming back. So that's one thing I feel we need to work on for the future, but in general, the feeling with the bike is good.

“It turns … in strange places, but it turns, so I can take the same lines as the Yamaha and stuff now. But that's what I struggled most on. When I was trying to get the lap time down, I struggled the most in those areas.

“It wasn't about braking harder and on the gas, it was about where you were braking, and how much speed you took in the corner. The bike needs corner speed. So I needed to try and understand that, but it's really difficult.

“Aleix's riding style, honestly, he's riding it well to make it do what it does. The bike is not naturally doing things it should do, and you need to override it a lot on the brakes. I was doing that, but my level to his level is again another step. So it's just one of those things that you need time to adapt to it and do it.

“I'm pretty sure that having a break, going away, coming back in Jerez, like when I went to Ducati, you start on a new track, you don't have those lines in your mind, you have a fresh page to start from. We'll see from there.”

At first, the RS-GP was too stiff and aggressive for Redding’s liking. But overnight changes “mellowed” the bike for Wednesday, a day during which the Englishman experimented with his riding position, and riding style.

“The bike struggles more with the front load, so you have to override it a lot yourself with the rear brake to do that,” he said. “And that's something we want to work on to improve. I didn't try too much [in terms of parts].

“At first I said, ‘The bike's really stiff, it's aggressive,’ so we changed some things, made it more agile, the engine more mellow. I came back today, we did this and that, and it's better. So it's just finding the way in the end.

“And that's it, trying to get comfortable on the bike, because the bike's quite different in size. In the corners, it doesn't really affect me, it feels quite good, but it's just in the straight I'm missing a little bit. So we went with longer footpegs which they made overnight, which was quite good.

“I felt better in the straight, much more positioned, but I think it was affecting the handling a bit more. Because when I crashed and I went back to the bike two, the agility came back quite fast, and the only thing that was different was the footpegs.

“So we have to think about that a little bit how we go about that, so it was good in the end to actually have that small crash to test that after, to come back and see that was better. [I] Did a couple of test things, came back with the electronics, but I just want to make the bike more rider friendly.”

To see the full results from Wednesday's MotoGP test at Valencia click here.


Loading Comments...