Team Suzuki Press Office – October 14th
Joan Mir: 12th – 1’29.944 (+ 0.469)
Alex Rins: 16th – 1’30.138 (+ 0.663)
The MotoGP field finally made its return to the much-loved Phillip Island on Friday, and even the local wildlife was keen to get a slice of the action as a wallaby made his way round the circuit.
The forecast rain mostly stayed away, with just few damp patches dotted around the Australian track for FP1, but it was the chilly wind which provided the biggest challenge of the day.
Both Team Suzuki Ecstar riders showed promising pace in the first session of the day. Alex Rins was able to set some impressive times and keep himself in the Top 4, while Joan Mir took some time to recover confidence with his GSX-RR after the long stop.
FP2 saw the wind pick up, and the pace too. Incredibly, at the end of the session, the first 13 riders were separated by just half a second. Rins and Mir were keen to end the day in the Top 10 as colder temperatures are predicted on Saturday morning, and they both put in the effort to climb up the order. Joan carved a second out of his FP1 time, and went 4th with just two minutes to go, but closed the session in 12th - just fractions away from the Top 10. Alex was 16th at the end of Friday, although he had good feelings on the bike.
“A cold and windy day, but it feels amazing to come back to the Island. FP1 was a bit scary due to the wet patches and kerbs with standing water, so it wasn’t easy to relax into it. Then FP2 was more straight forward and I’m quite happy with the work I did, I tried the hard rear tyre and I found it to be surprisingly competitive. Tomorrow I’ll continue with my set-up and compare the other tyres and settings.”
“Today has been positive overall and I can’t complain, I’m enjoying being back on my bike. I’m getting better session by session and my feeling with the bike is improving too. It’s a shame that I missed out on the Top 10 by such a tiny margin, but I feel that I can be faster so I’m not too disappointed. Tomorrow let’s see how much I can improve with my settings and everything, my ideal result would be to fight for the front two rows!”
Livio Suppo - Team Manager
“It’s been a positive day, despite the fact that the riders haven’t got direct passage to Q2 yet. However, they both worked towards race settings. We’re really happy to see Joan back on the bike, and he was so close to the Top 10 today. We’re looking forward to seeing how he progresses. Alex wasn’t really going for true time attack today, he preferred to hold some tyres back for tomorrow, and he also caught some riders cruising on his last lap. However, he’s already shown he has great potential here.”