Rea Makes Mixed Start To Estoril Weekend

Gino Rea - Photo Credit: Gresini Honda
Gino Rea - Photo Credit: Gresini Honda


Gino Rea was frustrated at the end of Friday practice for the Portuguese Grand Prix after two separate crashes interrupted his progress. The Briton was impressive in FP1 before sliding off the damp circuit and another error left him down in 23rd in the second session.

“It has been a difficult day today”, he admitted. “I tried to learn the track quite fast and I was actually up in fifth place for a long time. At the end I was following a fast rider but he came in to pit so I had to take a wider line, hit a damp patch and crashed. We changed some things on the bike for the afternoon but went in the wrong direction and I ended up having another crash in a slow corner. It felt like the tyre didn’t work and I crashed before I was fully leaned over. The team did a great job to fix the bike and I was able to get one lap in to improve my time but we have a lot of work still to do.”

Gresini teammate Ratthapark Wilairot was despondent after another day of disappointment with the Moriwaki chassis. The Thai rider was three places behind Rea and feels he has the potential to be higher up.

“We have tried a multitude of things today but my confidence with the Moriwaki MD600 is not improving. To be honest we are running out of ideas as to what to do! All I know is that I have more potential than this result shows and so do the team.”

Team Manager Fausto Gresini didn't pull any punches in his analysis of the day but remains hopeful of an improved showing on Saturday.

“To have two crashes in one day is always disappointing but the team are working hard to let Gino show his potential, which is clearly higher than this result shows. We will keep working but this situation is not fun for anybody.”

“Everything we are trying is not working and this is an embarrassing situation for Wilairot and the team to be in. We are running out of options to try with the bike but we’ll have a look at the data from today and see what things we can change for tomorrow.”