20 Mar MotoGP: Qatar
Season opener over in Qatar under the floodlights and not a bad start at all for Nolan Group riders!
Throughout the whole weekend, from practice to the final race our riders were present near the top of the standings. Danilo Petrucci in particular starting the season well with a 5th place finish in the main race after qualifying in 3rd.
Hafizh Syahrin making his debut race in MotoGP finished in the points, which is no more than can be asked for in his first ever race! Less fortune for Alex Rins however, whilst placing well in qualifying, he was unable to finish the race. Hopefully better luck in Argentina next round for him!
Excellent performances by Gardner and Kornfeil in Moto 2 and 3 respectively, waiting to see our other guys in action in the upcoming races.
The next race is Argentina … a hot race in every sense … stay with us and cheer our guys!
Danilo Petrucci FIFTH
“I am a bit conflicted. On the one hand I am happy with the Top 5 which was my goal even though I honestly had the potential to be able to finish on the podium. Pedrosa overtook me at the wrong time when the top 3 riders accelerated. The choice of soft tyre at the front perhaps was not the right one but I am still satisfied: we are much closer than last year.”
Hafizh Syahrin FOURTEENTH
“I felt really good in the race. I want to say a huge thank you to my team, because they did a great job. I finished my first MotoGP race inside the points, which is even beyond my target, but when you put your focus and your motivation there, it is possible. Around seven laps to go, I changed the power of the bike and four laps later, I switched back again. It’s also a huge part of my learning curve to understand the electronics. I was a bit nervous in the race, I didn’t want to make any mistake and end up in the gravel. I finished the race and brought two points for the team, which makes me truly happy. I hope, I can improve more in the next race and I continue training hard in order to be more ready and give the challenge to the rest of the riders.”
Remy Gardner TWELFTH
“The result is quite ok. I made a really good start, a great first lap and was in a truly favourable spot, plus I thought I could run with Binder, Oliveira and Vierge. I got to the first corner in this massive slipstream and wanted to brake like when I was alone, so there was a mistake on my behalf and I lost a lot of places, which is a real shame. But I came back, although I feel I could have done a much better race. Anyway, I’m still happy with my comeback and that I was able to manage to get twelfth position. We made a lot progress this year and I can’t wait to arrive in Argentina.”
Aaron Canet SECOND
“The race was complicated because after the start I was in ninth or tenth position, but I struggled to reach the leading group, Jorge Martín escaped a bit, but I was able to recover and I took into consideration the strategy of follow him and try to overtake him on the last straight, which would have been perfect. In the end it could not be because we had the wind against and, when I came out of his wake, my speed was not enough for more. I am happy for the second championship position. ”
Jakub Kornfeil NINTH
“I will start with huge thanks to my team. The bike was working so well and for this reason, I could dare quite many things during the race. From side of the rider, I also felt very good and believed a good result could come. From the half way distance of the race, I found more difficult to keep the pace. On the start and finish straight, I always lost little bit of time from Hondas what needed me to be better in the corners. That demands certain cost – tires. I tried to calm down, be less aggressive and focus on my target to finish the race inside the top ten. That worked and I’m very pleased with the job we’ve done. We have a strong package for Argentina so I can’t wait to race again. Another reason to bring home top ten finish was a bet I’ve closed with my crew chief. In case of my success, he would walk from circuit to hotel. So I’m about to pack a refreshment package for his 30 km long walk.”