Three days of non-stop work for Aprilia at Buriram. The Thai track, which enters the MotoGP calendar as of this year, proved more problematic than expected for the Noale manufacturer and Romano Albesiano does not hide the fact. Among the new components that the team has unveiled, we've seen a carbon fork, while the new engine is coming soon.
“This is a track with a lot of stop-starts, where riders are leaning for very little time. So the bike needs to be different compared to Sepang. I don't hide the fact that Buriram caused us some difficulty, it reminds me of Austria. The test has been useful anyway, as it has allowed us to widen the bike's scope in terms of functionality”.
Many expected to see the new engine at Buriram, but his has been put back.
“There is no new engine, rather new specifications for the development of the current one. You won't see the definitive one before the Losail race. Here we just had some components that we have evaluated. We're pleased, though in terms of speed we need to take another step”.
One of the latest new components is a fork.
“Exactly, we've worked in detail and have had positive feedback. This fork is lighter and is an important step forward in terms of our growth path i think. Unfortunately, we worked with only one new bike for each rider here in Thailand, which limited us, but at the same time it was important to continue to compare the 2017 and 2018 RS-GP. In the end, the old bike went practically unused”.
Albesiano wants to be clear though.
“This bike hasn't been in the wind tunnel yet, we'll go next week after returning from Thailand. I expect it to bring the step we need”.
As for the aerodynamics on the other hand.
“Initially, we'll work to fine tune what we have, seeing as each rider is still fitting the bike to his needs. As we know, Aleix and Scott have different body types, so a dedicated aerodynamic project is needed for each. We should be able to offer that at the Qatar race”.
In terms of the fairing, it seems everyone is following Ducati's approach. The latest is Suzuki.
“It's not identical. The upper part of the fairing is more like that of KTM if anything. It's a combination of ideas already seen. We are following our own path, according to indications provided by race director Danny Aldridge”.