09.08.2020 | news
Challenging day at Brno for Vierge and Dixon
PETRONAS Sprinta Racing’s Moto2 riders battled tricky conditions for little reward today; Vierge finished 12th and Dixon retired from the raceIt proved to be a difficult day for PETRONAS Sprinta Racing, and their Moto2 riders Xavi Vierge and Jake Dixon, with the pair battling tyre issues at the Grand Prix České republiky. Vierge was able to claw back a 12th place finish, while Dixon was forced to retire from the race due to a mechanical issue.
The race started well for Vierge, who was working hard to stay with the leading group around the 5.4km Automotodrom Brno circuit. The Spaniard showed his strength early on, moving into ninth. Unfortunately as the race progressed, Xavi’s tyres struggled for grip and he found himself unable to keep up with those ahead. Pushing hard in the closing stages, despite the tricky conditions, Vierge made a series of strong moves to take 12th on the final lap. He now sits 11th in the riders’ standings with 25 points.
Dixon, who was keen to move on from the bad luck experienced at Jerez, also struggled from the opening lap with a lack of grip at the Czech track. The Brit tried everything he could to gain time on those in front of him, becoming the last of the late brakers in order to close the gap. Unfortunately, a bolt on the rear brake on his Triumph-powered Kalex broke. Jake tried to ride through it for a couple of laps but realised it was going to be a mountain too high to scale today and pulled into the pits to retire the bike with nine laps to go.
The Moto2 riders won’t have to wait long to be back in action, with the next event only days away. The next race for Xavi and Jake will be next weekend at the Red Bull Ring – Spielberg, Austria (14-16 August).
It was a tough race. We knew the pace wasn’t great today, but we wanted to take as many points as possible. Clearly there isn’t something working 100% on Xavi’s bikes, so we need to figure this out and keep working on it. We are not so far off in the championship in terms of our target, so we need to keep aiming for this. I believe we will be able to come good again; it’s just a matter of time.
Jake had a problem with the bike today. There were no mistakes made by the team, it was just a mechanical failure but it meant he had to retire from the race. It’s a shame because he qualified well and unfortunately we couldn’t make the most of that. We need to regroup and make sure it’s better next race.
We tried to make a good start to be in the front group and make up as many positions as possible. I gave it my all but lap-by-lap I started dropping back and couldn’t stay with them. I was having problems with the front tyre and just couldn’t get the grip I needed. I kept fighting until the last lap though and we finished 12th. Thank you to the team because they worked so hard, we are not where we want to be and they are trying to help fix this. We’ll look at the data and see what we can do next weekend in Austria.
Not ideal, but it is what it is. I felt like I had zero grip from lap one, I know everyone was experiencing the same thing, but the tyre just didn't feel right from the warm-up lap. I was trying to make time up on the brakes on corner entry, but I was losing so much on the exit. The front tyre was starting to overheat and then the rear brake snapped. It’s unfortunate, especially as we know that I tend to be stronger in the closing stages of the race. I feel like I haven’t been having much luck recently, but hopefully something will change in Austria and we can get a good result.