Scott Redding surprised by race run speed
10 March 2014 09:11
British rider Scott Redding gave himself a morale boost heading into his rookie MotoGP campaign after he delivered an impressive first distance run on the new Honda RCV1000R production bike in Qatar last night.
The 2013 Moto2 runner-up set his best time at the three-night Qatar test on the second flying lap of his 20-lap long run, which was two short of full race distance.
The 21-year-old ended the final test in 11th place on the timesheets and he was only 0.003s behind fellow RCV1000R rider Hiroshi Aoyama and just over 0.7s off Nicky Hayden’s pace.
For the majority of the test though Redding was comfortably within 0.5s of 2006 world champion Hayden, who is the current benchmark on the underpowered RCV100R.
Speaking to MCN, the Gloucestershire rider said: “I was actually surprised how good my race simulation was because I was a bit nervous before wondering if the bike was going to be a beast and I would struggle with it. But actually all my training has really helped because I felt quite relaxed and the lap time was consistent. At the beginning I was faster than Nicky and he was faster at the end but he also made less laps. I lost 0.5s at the end with rear edge grip on entry. It seemed to drop off quite a lot in the last four or five laps and each time I’d go in the rear would try and come round. I need to get to know the tyres more when they are used but I was surprised how good the tyres were all the way through. The lap time was consistent and I made my fastest lap of the test in the simulation, which is positive. And I am sure I had 10 or 20% in my pocket on some laps in the simulation.”