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APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI – Grand Prix of the Americas, Free Practice

Bautista_COTA

FIRST DAY OF PRACTICE IN TEXAS. BAUTISTA ENDS THE DAY IN 17th PLACE, 24th FOR MELANDRI

Austin (USA), 10 April 2015 – The second round of the 2015 MotoGP season, which for Aprilia represents the return to the top class, opened up in the rain for the first session. In the afternoon the track complicated things for the riders as it progressively dried out, forcing them into a situation where they were able to push hard on slicks only during the last part of the session.

For Aprilia Racing Team Gresini this was just the second stop in a long season where the bike and team will have to grow, motivated by competition on the track in the highest level motorcycle racing championship.

Alvaro Bautista, after finishing the morning FP1 in eleventh place (wet), finished with the 17th best time, putting 2’07,419 on the sheets. Marco Melandri (who is riding on the Texan track for the very first time) finished with the 24th best time at 2’11,258.

ROMANO ALBESIANO (Aprilia Racing Manager)

“A day conditioned by the weather. In the morning we were able to test in the wet and it didn’t go too badly at all. The afternoon was a difficult session to interpret. In the end it dried out enough and Bautista was in the pack and his feeling with the bike was positive, so we’re happy enough. With Marco we’re trying a big more radical engine control solutions so his performance is suffering in this aspect as well.”

FAUSTO GRESINI (Team Manager)

“Bautista demonstrated progress compared to the first race and that is encouraging. We didn’t lap much in the dry, but on the wet he had good sensations and since rain hasn’t been ruled out for the next few days, it’s important for us to be ready for these conditions as well. We are really at the beginning and we are all putting forth our best effort, we just need time.”

ALVARO BAUTISTA

“Today we had the chance to lap in the wet. We tried different power management maps, especially coming out of turns, and I was quite comfortable. This is important because the forecast is uncertain and we need to be ready in case we have a wet race. In the afternoon with a half dry track I used slicks only in the second part of the session. Now we need to work to improve grip, especially in the middle of turns, and power management. We’ll be working on these aspects tomorrow.”

MARCO MELANDRI

“Two very different sessions because of the weather. On my bike we’re exploring some rather different electronics solutions and my performance is suffering because of that. But on the other hand, we don’t want to leave anything untried to recover that feeling and confidence in the bike that I need in order to push the way I’d like to. There is still a lot of weekend ahead and we have a lot of work to do.”