Reigning World Superbike champion Ben Spies has admitted his hopes of challenging for regular top six finishes in next year’s MotoGP world championship will depend on how quickly he can adapt to Bridgestone tyres.
The Texan produced an impressive debut performance on board Yamaha’s YZR-M1 in Valencia last month, the 25-year-old claiming a brilliant seventh place after he fought his way through from 12th.
ut Spies has told MCN one of the biggest challenges he faces is learning the limits of the Bridgestone controlled tyres.
He said: “I just need more laps on newer tyres. That feeling of bringing them up to temperature I was getting more comfortable with in Valencia.
"It takes time and every time I put a new sets on the bike, every time my second and third lap were coming quicker, but not as quick as I would like.
"At least I know I can improve that. Getting them to the right operating temperature is key and once they get there I’ve got to turn my brain on and stick it right in there. That is hard when you feel them move around a little bit.
"It’s not difficult but different and it’s an important part of it because you’ve got to get off the line and be ready to go with those guys if you want a chance.
"My weakness is that part because those guys are used to that grip at the start of a race.
"When the tyres make a little drop, that’s more of the feeling I’m used to.
"I need to shut my eyes a few times and try and run it off the track in a few corners and see what happens.
"I just need more trust from the tyres.”