Team Suzuki Press Office – August 19th
Alex Rins: 13th – 1’30.321 (+ 0.484)
Joan Mir: 15th – 1’30.455 (+ 0.618)
The rain clouds rolled in around the Styrian Alps ahead of the race weekend, leaving the newly laid out Red Bull Ring damp for the first session on Friday. This didn’t deter Suzuki’s determined riders who were quick out the box. Joan Mir and Alex Rins were running within the Top 5 in FP1, taking it in turns to top the timesheets over the course of the session. They were running 1st and 2nd respectively as the track dried enough to switch to slicks. They closed the morning’s action with Mir 3rd and Rins 6th.
The GSX-RR riders carried their great form through to FP2 and they remained in solid contention for Top 10 placings running into Saturday. With ten minutes of the session left, Alex was 2nd and Joan 4th, but rain swept through the circuit and a frantic rush to get a time attack in on slicks shook up the timesheets. Despite improving their pace and only being around half a second off the top, Rins finished Friday in 13th and Mir in 15th.
“I felt quite good today, my pace was nice with a used tyre. Although, once again, when I put a fresh tyre in I wasn’t really able to make use of it and improve a lot. Let’s see how tomorrow is, it would be perfect to get directly into Q2, but if that’s not possible then I’ll give everything to graduate through from Q1. The layout is much safer, but there’s a big difference in the surface and it’s pretty bumpy on the new section. During FP2 we used the bigger brake disc and I felt much better on the hard braking zones.”
“I’m a bit disappointed with how today has worked out. I set my best lap towards the end of FP2, but it was cancelled for exceeding track limits. Then I had one flying lap left, but I ended up running wide, so I feel pretty frustrated. What I have to keep in mind is that my pace was up there all day, and I had a nice start to the day in FP1, so let’s try not to let the frustration get to us and let’s focus on setting more good laps tomorrow.”
Livio Suppo - Team Manager
“In terms of race pace, both riders have shown good potential and good speed, so that’s a promising sign; we know the possibility of strong results is there. Joan had his best lap cancelled, and it’s a pity. Anyway, FP1 was a really nice start and we’ll look forward to trying for the Top 10 tomorrow.”