Bradley Smith: 2016 MotoGP testing frustrating and a challenge

Bradley Smith admits his MotoGP pre-season has been "a challenge" and "frustrating" at times

Bradley Smith: 2016 MotoGP testing frustrating and a challenge

The British rider has had a quiet winter, finishing four of the nine days of testing inside the top 10, but was the first to complete a race simulation, at Sepang in February.

While Smith is lining up with the Tech3 Yamaha squad for a fourth-straight year, the change to a control ECU and Michelin's return as tyre supplier has made the pre-season "quite different compared to other years".

"It's been an interesting process where we've had to get used to the new tyres, as well as to judge their evolution because we've had some different front and rear tyre specs to evaluate," he added.

"I must say that learning to adapt the bike to these different compounds has been a challenge.

"Some parts of the pre-season have also been frustrating for me because of the time the weather took from us in Australia, and also the [limited] tyre situation a bit here in Qatar and as a result, we weren't able to extract the maximum from the available testing time.

"Nevertheless, we are within touching distance of our target, which I think will be inside the top eight this year."

Smith was sixth in last year's championship as the top satellite rider and after finishing Qatar's last day of testing in 12th, 1.156 seconds off factory rider Jorge Lorenzo, remains "confident that we can do a good job" in 2016.

"I still believe that we have a bike that's only at 90 per cent so there's room to improve and we are always getting closer," he said.

"[Friday's] test was positive as I improved my time quite a lot and we had consistent pace.

"Also, I was able to go out and ride quickly immediately which is something that I was struggling with on these tyres but I figured that one out.

"I'm excited to complete the testing and finally get into racing mode as the competition brings out a bit of extra pressure which some people like and some don't.

"I like to be put under pressure and I feel I perform better in that way, so roll on the start of the season and FP1 in a few weeks' time."

shares
comments
Vinales: Suzuki's new MotoGP gearshift a 'big improvement'

Previous article

Vinales: Suzuki's new MotoGP gearshift a 'big improvement'

Next article

Aprilia encouraged by 2016 MotoGP bike's debut tests

Aprilia encouraged by 2016 MotoGP bike's debut tests
Load comments
Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on Plus

Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on

Saturday 23 October marks the 10th anniversary of Marco Simoncelli's death. The one-time 250cc world champion and double MotoGP podium finisher was the ultimate maverick character with big hair, a big personality and an even bigger talent. Autosport pays tribute to a much-missed figure, a decade on

Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha on his road to the MotoGP title Plus

Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha on his road to the MotoGP title

Fabio Quartararo has his first match point in the 2021 MotoGP title race this weekend at Misano. While the 2021 Yamaha is a much-improved bike to its inconsistent predecessor, its the rider himself who has shown the biggest evolution this season. Oriol Puigdemont delves into Quartararo's growth.

MotoGP
Oct 19, 2021
How KTM has wrestled control of young MotoGP talent from Honda Plus

How KTM has wrestled control of young MotoGP talent from Honda

There once was a time when Honda controlled any young rider who emerged in motorcycling, but its market dominance has now swung to the side of MotoGP rival KTM and, to a lesser extent Ducati. Could this development have significant ramifications for the future?

MotoGP
Oct 12, 2021
Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider Plus

Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider

Marc Marquez's romp to victory at the Grand Prix of the Americas led many to believe the 'old' pre-injury Honda rider was close to coming back to his full powers. However, the 'old' Marquez will probably never exist again and instead he'll have to adapt to his new reality to return to title-winning ways in 2022

MotoGP
Oct 6, 2021
The Marquez self-preservation that fulfilled a COTA MotoGP “dream” Plus

The Marquez self-preservation that fulfilled a COTA MotoGP “dream”

Marc Marquez scorched to his seventh Circuit of the Americas victory in MotoGP last Sunday with a display reminiscent of his pre-injury form. However, his path to the win across the weekend was in keeping with the current reality of his physical limitations, with self-preservation on Saturday key to his Sunday success

MotoGP
Oct 4, 2021
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Plus

How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike

His third place at Misano made Enea Bastianini the fifth different Ducati-mounted rider to score a podium in 2021. Amid a season that has seen one rider amass the bulk of Yamaha and Honda's success, the Ducati's versatility makes for a potent weapon, but the contribution of a former leading light shouldn't be forgotten

MotoGP
Sep 23, 2021
The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career Plus

The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career

Maverick Vinales’ early debut with Aprilia has been one of the most interesting plots of the recent MotoGP rounds. The results may not look standout on paper, but a closer inspection reveals just how much progress Vinales has truly made in understanding a bike that has taken him well out of his “comfort zone”

MotoGP
Sep 22, 2021
How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest Plus

How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino Grand Prix will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP’s present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia’s flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021