Fresh from qualifying on the front row in his return to the European Superstock 1000 class, caught up with Kev Coghlan to talk about his offseason, the new R1, and his hopes for Sunday's race.
You qualified third fastest, 0.05s behind the pole sitter. You must be happy with that.

Kev Coghlan:
I think it's testament to the amount of work Yamaha have put into it. They've been backing us really strong and the MRS team have been mega through testing and the preseason. To come to the first race and be that fast and that close to pole's a good start.
What has your testing programme been like?

Kev Coghlan:
We did a couple of days at the official Yamaha test, a couple of days here [at Aragon]. A couple of days in Misano as well. That gave us a couple of tracks to try and get a good base setting. Now we've got a good base setting but with it being such a new bike it's going to take a couple of races just to move forward a little bit. But to be so close at the first race is good. We'll see what happens tomorrow [Sunday] with the race pace, I'll try and get through the mayhem in the first couple of laps and I think we'll be good.
The Superstock 1000 field is stronger in depth than ever this year. Were you expecting this when you signed with MRS?

Kev Coghlan:
I thought it was going to be a good idea coming into 'Stock' this year! You've got guys like Barrier, who won it twice and just came off a year and a half in Superbike. Guarnoni as well has come down from Superbike. There's four or five of us coming from Supersport. Frontrunners as well, it's not just anyone. To me it's good the field is so strong. If you win you're better off beating top guys, you're going to get more credit for it. We want to be up at the front fighting and we'll see how it goes at the first race and where we end up.
You've had experience riding in this class before. Do you feel you've adapted from the Supersport machine?

Kev Coghlan:
A little bit, yeah. When I rode the Panigale [in 2012] I didn't really know what I was doing to be honest with you. I was pretty much riding it like a 600. Being in the MRS team with Adrien Morillas, in preseason he's changed the way I go about getting the lap time [and] to really ride it like a Superbike rather than a 600. Having someone in the box and out on track watching that's got so much experience has really brought me on a lot.
Florian Marino, a proven challenger in WSS in 2014, is your team-mate for this campgain. Does this help to spur you on?

Kev Coghlan:
I think so, yeah. To be honest since my 125 days I've never really had a strong team-mate. Having him there, even all through preseason we push each other on. Every time you come into the box you're looking to see what lap time he did. Having the likes of Barrier and Guarnoni on the Yamaha as well, they're going to be flying all year. Having so many guys to compare yourself to is good.
At times you were challenging for race wins in Supersport in 2014. Was the lure of racing the new R1 the main reason behind coming to Superstock?

Kev Coghlan:
I'd have like to have stayed another year with DMC in World Supersport but they decided to go in a different direction. The other offers I had in Supersport weren't ones where I thought I could challenge for the title. For me if I want to go to Superbike in the next couple of years I've got to be winning races and winning championships. This seemed like the perfect opportunity for that.

We needed another year of experience in the Supersport. I had a couple of races at the front last year but we weren't quite consistent enough. To be fighting for a championship you need to be there every weekend at the front. The likes of Qatar, it had been a few races since I had been fighting at the front and I noticed that. I was making mistakes with passes just from not being in that front group. You need that experience there. It would have been good to build on that but it wasn't to be. We'll take that experience and put it into the 'Stock 1000 this year.
You have you been using the rear tyre allocation this weekend?

Kev Coghlan:
All yesterday and today we've only got three rear tyres. We decided to stay on the same one all day yesterday and keep two for today. That was why we dropped down a bit [in FP2]. Other guys were banging in a new tyre but from what I can make out we've been as quick as anyone on new and old rubber. That should put us in good stead for the race.
You have been in contention for race wins at this circuit in the last two years. Will you be fighting at the front come Sunday?

Kev Coghlan:
I think the biggest thing is going to be getting off the line and through the first couple of laps. I want to be clean and make no mistakes. If we do that I think we'll be in the fight for the win.



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