Friday’s free practices for Pirelli Dutch Round ended with Alvaro Bautista in first place and Michael Rinaldi – who was forced to miss FP2 due to a technical problem – in sixteenth.
The Spaniard appeared to be in great shape from the very first laps of FP1: he finishes with the fastest time, after working hard on tire choice ahead of the weekend’s races.
In FP2 Bautista pushed his Panigale V4R with conviction, lowering his morning time by almost three-tenths to close with a 1’34.316 securing first position in the combined standings with 216 thousandths ahead of Lowes (Kawasaki).
An uphill day, however, for Michael Rinaldi. After some difficulties at the start of FP2, the Italian rider worked with his team on the set-up. The road seemed to be the right one, the sensations were good, but just after two laps in FP2 a technical problem forced him to return to the garage twice without being able to continue the session.
Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #1)
“It was a very positive first day. We worked this morning to find the best feeling and in the afternoon we were able to improve. We dedicated a lot of time to choosing the right tires for the races, and collecting important data. We definitely have a lot of confidence even though we know that our rivals have always been very competitive on this track. We also don’t know what kind of weather we’ll find tomorrow.
Michael Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati #21)
“A difficult day, definitely the most difficult of the season. In the first session, we encountered some difficulties but between the two sessions the team worked well and in the first lap of FP2 the feeling was already better. Unfortunately, I had a technical problem that forced me to return to the box. Tomorrow it won’t be easy but without a doubt, we will try”.
Positive feelings for Nicolò Bulega and the Ducati Panigale V2 during the first day at the TT Circuit of Assen. The Aruba.it Racing WSSP team rider closes both sessions in second position, improving significantly in FP2 (1’37.596) to finish just 5 thousandths behind the leader of the day Oncu (Kawasaki).
Nicolò Bulega (Aruba.it Racing WSSP #11)
“I am very satisfied. We are back at this circuit for the second time and right from FP1 the feeling and times were better than last year. We still have to fix some details to fight for the victory but the conditions are definitely positive”