Scott Redding buoyant after final Moto2 test
Scott Redding’s confidence rocketed after he ended the final Moto2 test in Jerez with the fourth quickest time.
The British teenager, who was second fastest on day two, ended with a best time of 1.44.394 to finish less than 0.3s off the best time set by Claudio Corti.
Riding the Marc VDS Racing Suter MMX machine, 17-year-old Redding has enjoyed a startling transformation in fortunes.
At the first two official tests in Valencia and Jerez he seemed to struggle to adapt to the Moto2 class after a problematic second campaign in the 125GP class in 2009.
Redding set his best time of 1.4.394 on the final day as soared from outside the top 20 in the first two tests into the top five in Jerez.
Redding, who became the youngest rider in history ever to win a Grand Prix in 2008, was only beaten by Corti, MotoGP winner Toni Elias and Karel Abraham.
The Gloucestershire rider, who will make his Marc VDS Racing Team debut in the season’s opener in Qatar on April 11, said: “It's all come together during the last two tests here in Jerez and, I'm glad to say, we're now well and truly on the pace.
"We've made some big steps forward with the set-up of the bike, but the biggest improvement has come from me changing my riding style; I was trying to ride the bike like a 125cc machine, when it requires a very different style to get the best from it.
"Having been in the top five on the timesheet throughout these three days, we head for the first race in Qatar knowing that we're on the pace, but I'm determined not to be over confident.
"We'll be aiming for a top ten finish but, if I'm honest, I think top five could be a possibility if everything comes together for us.
"I just can't wait to get there and get the season started now.”
Former Kawasaki MotoGP boss Michael Bartholemy, who is now in charge of Redding’s Belgian-based Moto2 effort, said he was delighted to see the 2008 British 125GP winner hit form.
Bartholemy said: “Scott initially struggled to get the best from the bike, but he's done a great job of adapting his riding style during the last two outings at Jerez, steadily progressing up the timesheets as a result.
"Sometimes it's easy to forget he's only 17-years-old, because his approach is that of a much more mature rider.
"We head for Qatar with a top ten finish as his target, but I know he's determined to break into the top five first time out and really stamp his authority on the championship.”