APRILIA STARTS OFF WITH THREE RIDERS IN THE OPENING RACE OF QATAR.
THIS IS A FIRST IN THE HISTORY OF THE NOALE-BASED BRAND, A SIGN OF RENEWED COMMITMENT IN THE PREMIER CLASS.
By now, we are counting down the hours to the start of the 2019 MotoGP World Championship, one of the most anticipated of recent years.
The artificial lighting of the Losail International Circuit is ready to illuminate the opening race on Sunday, but the engines will already be rumbling from Friday for the first free practice sessions.
For Aprilia, it will be a true “first time” with three RS-GP machines on the grid for the first race. This is something that has never before happened in Aprilia history and it is a sign of the revamping that the Italian manufacturer carried out on their MotoGP project during the winter break.
Revamping that included changes in Aprilia Racing both in technical terms and with regards to the staff, with the clear goal of substantiating their ambitions in the premier class.
Dressed in an attractive new black livery, which is a clear reference to Aprilia tradition, the RS-GP tackled the pre-season tests with good feedback both from confirmed rider, Aleix Espargaró and new entry Andrea Iannone, assisted by the work Bradley Smith and the test team carried out. It is a three-point offence that will be complete in Qatar, thanks to the English rider’s first wild-card of the season.
"Preparation for the season was positive overall. The new bike is definitely a step forward in the right direction. I found a good feeling and I think there is still margin to work with. Especially in a few areas, we can definitely improve. The data collected in the simulations during the tests helped us to understand a lot in terms of the strong and not-so-strong points of the new project. Like every year, I can't wait to get on the track and start getting down to business."
"During the last tests on this track, we worked well, focusing on our priorities in anticipation of the race. At the end of the three days, we reached a good base to start from for this weekend. I am feeling positive, although keeping my feet on the ground. This is all new to us, so it won’t be a walk in the park, but I am confident that, if we are able to take 100% advantage of the available potential, we’ll be able to start on the right foot."