Tricky qualifying day sees Remy line up 20th in Portugal
Tech3 KTM Factory Racing experienced a tricky qualifying day at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve under difficult weather conditions again. Indeed, rain and wind were awaiting the MotoGP class this morning. Free Practice 3 started at 9:55 local time (GMT-1) with a heavy rain, but luckily as the day went by, conditions started to improve, meaning that the final free practice and the qualifying sessions took place on a drying track.
Following his best Friday to date since the start of his MotoGP career (P15 at the end of Day 1), Remy Gardner jumped back on his KTM RC16 hoping to continue the good work. During the first session of the day, he managed to improve his time from yesterday by 0.718 seconds towards the end of his first run and ended up in P18, meaning that he was on the Q1 entry list. During Free Practice 4, Remy did a run of fifteen laps to prepare his race pace. His best lap time was 1’52.866 and he was sixteenth of the session. At 14:10 for qualifying 1, the rain had stopped and the track had started to dry, which pushed the Australian to go out with slick tyres.
Unfortunately, he crashed at Turn 9 in his first lap, meaning that he lost time while he went back to the pit box to get his second bike. He ended up doing four laps with a best lap time of 1’50.953. Tomorrow, he will start the Grande Prémio Tissot de Portugal from P20 on row 7, and will look forward to dry conditions scheduled for the race.
“I think that we made the right decision to go out with slick tyres today even if I ended up crashing in turn 9. The best way to learn about the tyres’ behaviour is to push and test the limits, and this is what I did today. I have had worst crashes, I will probably feel a bit sore tomorrow morning when I wake up, but I am feeling ok overall.
Tomorrow will be tough because it should be a dry day, and we have not ridden at all on the dry. I was looking forward to trying Portimao on a dry track, so we will see tomorrow at the warm up before the race.”