Bradley Smith was pleased to silence some of his critics after fighting his way through the field to finish sixth at Aragon. The British rookie qualified down in 15th and slipped back another two places at the start before charging back into contention.
After whispers that he struggled when racing wheel-to-wheel, Smith felt he proved a point today with his aggressive overtaking and takes great confidence into the final four races.
“Nobody can say I don’t like working hard for my results after that. I had a bad start and it took a little while for me to get into my rhythm and find a good feeling with the tyres. I was a little bit worried at the beginning as there were many riders in front of me and I thought it might be difficult to reach the top 10. But I kept improving my pace and got more comfortable with the Tech 3 Racing Team bike and I started to make my way forward.”
“As I was overtaking people I kept thinking this might be the last one but I just put my head down. It was definitely a crazy battle but really good fun. There were a lot of close moves and I loved every minute of it. It was something that I haven’t done for a while and holding my own in a tough fight is something I’ve been told I’m no good at, so I put a few things straight this weekend.”
“We did a good job to finish sixth having started 15th. We didn’t quite get the result that I was looking for, but I learnt a lot in this race and although I lost some points to Iannone and de Angelis in the Championship, I am confident for the last four races.”
Tech 3 team manager Herve Poncharal didn't think Smith was able to show his full potential on Saturday after his crash in practice but was back to his best on race day.
“That was a typically chaotic Moto2 race again where there was a lot of action in a lot of places and you couldn’t take your eyes of the race for one second. We were clearly very competitive this weekend but unfortunately a small crash on Saturday morning ruined Bradley’s qualifying and starting from 15th makes it very difficult. We got to show our true potential again in the warm-up when he was third, so we started the race with high hopes that he could fight his way through to the top six.”
“This time the start of the race was not very good and for a few laps he was out of the points, but Bradley never gave up and pushed really hard. He was lapping at the same pace as the leading group and making some brilliant overtakes that showed when the lights go out he is one of the most determined guys on the grid. Considering where we started and where we were for the first few laps, we can’t be unhappy to finish in sixth. This shows how good the Mistral 610 package is and how good and motivated Bradley is.”