-- Hanika tops final Rookies Test - Simpson 21st
The second and final Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup preseason test at Jerez concluded on a beautifully sunny afternoon on Wednesday with 16 year old Czech Karel Hanika topping the timing sheets just as he had done at the first test two weeks earlier.
The two day test started with miserable cold and rain on Tuesday with 17 year old Austrian Lukas Trautmann fastest ahead of Hanika and Enea Bastianini, the 15 year old Italian riding in his first Rookies Cup season.
A clear blue sky cheered everyone on Wednesday morning and though the track and air temperatures were still low the sun was out. Hanika was quickly on the pace and fastest in both of the first two sessions.
Hanika's day cut short
At the end of the second session Hanika crashed entering the start and finish straight. “I grabbed too much throttle coming out of the last corner and high-sided myself. I hurt my foot and my left hand, I have had them x-rayed and nothing is broken but my hand is very painful and I can't hold the handlebars, I tried to ride again but couldn't. The bike is great we have some good settings I think, I am just sorry that I could not do more laps.”
Spaniards chasing the Czech
15 year old Spaniards Jorge Martin and Marcos Ramirez were the quickest men in the second half of the day, concluding the 5th and final session with the fastest times but without being able to match Hanika's time from earlier in the day. “I am so happy with the testing today,” said Martin. “It ended brilliantly, we managed to sort out the suspension that was troubling me so much all through the last test and now the bike is really working well, it's great fun to ride. I can't wait to get to Texas and the first race. I think it is going to be a great season, I am sure we will all be very close, everyone is enjoying these bikes so much.
Ramirez had the same success. “The test has been very successful, really great. It was hard work though because we had a wet start yesterday and then in the dry today I really struggled with the suspension. We knew we had a lot of work to do on it after the first test and for a while we could not find a solution, in the last session though it really came together and improved a lot, the front chattering was cured and I could go much faster. I think that there is still more we can do but the main problem seems to be solved.”
Trautmann happy with overall performance
Though he was only 12th fastest at the end of the test Trautmann knew that there was a good reason for that. “It was not a perfect test for me but for sure I am very happy. In the rain on day one I felt so much at home on the bike and had such confidence. Then today it was dry and almost immediately I was doing the same times as we did at the first test a few weeks ago. Unfortunately I then had an engine problem and had to swap to a spare bike for the last couple of sessions and so I couldn't do the lap times I wanted but I'm not too worried about that. Now I just want to get to Texas and go racing, I'm supper happy and feel very confident for the season.”
Results - Test Classification
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