14.08.2020 | news
Impressive performance from Dixon in Moto2 Free Practice
PETRONAS Sprinta Racing’s Jake Dixon shows good from in opening day of action in Austria to finish fifth overall, team-mate Xavi 13thThe important task for today, with rain forecast throughout the racing weekend at Red Bull Ring – Spielberg, was to finish the day within the automatic Q2 positions. Both PETRONAS Sprinta Racing Moto2 riders accomplished this with Jake Dixon fifth and Xavi Vierge 13th.
The first practice session of the weekend for the Moto2 category proved to be a close one, with one second covering the top twenty riders. Both Vierge and Dixon started positively with some strong laps that saw them well within top-ten during the first half of FP1. Unfortunately as the times improved and the gaps between riders became smaller, the pair were unable to finish the session where they might have wanted. Jake’s best time of 1min 29.785secs saw him finish 18th, with team-mate Xavi just behind in 19th after setting a fastest lap time of 1min 29.881secs.
Although heavy rain had fallen during the MotoGP session that preceded Moto2’s Free Practice 2, the track dried quickly and it didn’t take long for times to begin to fall. Dixon decided not to go out until the track had dried further, a tactic that paid off for the Brit. In the closing stages of the session, Jake improved upon his morning time and set a 1min 29.207secs lap. This saw him surge up the timesheet and end FP2 third, moving him into fifth in the combined times. Team-mate Xavi spent the majority of the session lapping within the top-ten and at the chequered flag was sixth, thanks to a 1min 29.510secs lap. The Spaniard also finished the day in the automatic Q2 places (13th), an important achievement with the possibility of rain affecting FP3 tomorrow.
Moto2 action will resume for Xavi and Jake tomorrow at 10.55am local time (4.55pm MYT) with FP2, before Q1 gets underway at 3.10pm local time (9.10pm MYT).
I think today might have been my best dry Free Practice day! I was a little frustrated after FP1. I was running in around 12th for the whole session and felt really good, but then I didn’t string it together for one final flying lap at the end. We looked through the data afterwards and found where we needed to improve, on both the bike and myself. We put that into practice in FP2 and I put a good lap time in! The conditions were tricky because the weather wasn’t consistent. We only managed three laps before putting the tyres on and then only got about another three fast laps in during that session. Overall it’s a good day. If it’s dry tomorrow I want to try and do a bit more of a longer run in FP3, but overall I feel quite confident that I can have a good result this weekend.
The recent races have been hard but we’re here with our focus on this weekend, and whether it will be raining or not! We decided to start FP1 using the softer race tyres and we were really strong. Then in the last part of the session we couldn’t do as well as everyone else. FP1 wasn’t as bad as it might look, but we do have some things that we need to work on. We made a step forward in FP2, I’m feeling more confident and our pace was a lot better. We are closer to the front than we were, but we still need to make another step forward tomorrow. We need to wait and see what happens with the weather conditions because there is rain forecast, but like we saw today it could be forecast but not happen or only happen on one part of the circuit. I need to say thank you to the team because they have worked so hard to make this step forward and I’m sure we can be at the front.