Eugene Laverty places as top Open Class rider for first time.
POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar battles to finish fourteenth, whilst Nicky Hayden claims points at Motorland Aragon.
Eugene Laverty took a result worthy of his improved performance since the return from the summer break. The POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider had marked the MotorLand circuit down as one that could be favourable for him, and that proved to be the case. Yesterday he qualified as the top Open Class rider and today he continued with that form. Although he lost some positions at the start of the race, Laverty was able to keep a steady pace and fight in a very experienced group, climbing up places and defending his final position. He crossed the finish line in fourteenth place, as the best Open Class rider on race day.
“I am very happy with the result in the race here at Aragon. The qualifying session yesterday was fantastic but it was just one lap, today was very important because we were strong in 23. I was used to fighting for the top positions and fighting to get into the points now is different, but the Open concept is something that helps us to stay motivated. I felt relaxed on the bike, and the bike was working better towards the end. I just rode my own race and focused on what I was doing. Even though we were battling for fourteenth, I treated it as if we were in the fight to win the race. That’s the way you have to approach it. Nicky is a great teammate and a great racer. You don’t know where he is going to be in practice; he might have a bad practice or a bad qualifying session, but then come Sunday he really puts it together for the race. He did just that today, and we had a great fight together. We have been doing a great job in the second half of the season and finally we were able to have something to show for it today, I hope to continue to progress in the upcoming rounds.”
Nicky Hayden’s performance completed the positive day for the POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar Team. Although he came into the race at MotorLand with a fractured right thumb, the American showed his experience and professionalism as he gained consistency throughout the weekend. Today he fought fight in a group that decided the positions from twelfth to seventeenth, and finished the race rounding off the points-scoring places.
“I got a really good start, and I felt good for a couple of laps, but a few guys got past me and I couldn’t tag onto the group in front. We ended up in a big battle, and it’s a shame that we were so far back because there was some good racing. It was a lot of very hard racing for fifteenth. It’s not been the worst weekend for us. We definitely qualified well, and even this morning we weren’t so far off, inside the top fifteen a lot. I did my fastest lap of the race on Lap 18, which was nice. It shows the bike was working well, to be able to go fast like that. I was fighting with Eugene at the end, and I actually got in front of him late on at one place, but then he came past me at Turn 8. We had a little contact and I went wide, losing a little time, but I was able to catch up. It’s fifteenth place, but there a couple of positives to take from the race; the bike is working well. My thumb didn’t make things easy this weekend, but I don’t want to say that is the reason why I finished where I did. We are going to get it X-rayed to make sure nothing moved, and as long as that’s the case I’ll be ok and hopefully I will be better for Japan.”
Next race: Japanese Grand Prix.