Thursday, February 22, 2024
HomeMotorsports"Lost confidence": Augusto Fernandez lags behind at Sepang test

“Lost confidence”: Augusto Fernandez lags behind at Sepang test

Augusto Fernandez is way behind on all three days of the Sepang test – Confidence is in the cellar – The Spaniard has not found a good feeling for his KTM

Extremely difficult test days in Malaysia for Augusto Fernandez, who is about to start his second MotoGP season with the Tech3 team. On all three days in Sepang, the Spaniard had a considerable gap. On Tuesday he was 1.6 seconds down, on Wednesday 1.8 and on the final day 2.1. Although Fernandez improved, his personal best time was 1:58.740 minutes. He was by far the slowest regular driver

An extensive test program was planned for Fernandez. On Tuesday afternoon, he received the carbon chassis from KTM for the first time. “Even when I was riding slowly, I could feel something. The chassis is better,” he confirms. “Grip on the rear tire.”

However, there was also a crash on Tuesday and Wednesday. After all, the test work also included new fairing variants. But Fernandez and his crew lost their way. He couldn’t find a good feeling for the bike.

“We tried things that didn’t work. They were the wrong decisions. The bike moves a lot at the rear. These are problems that I didn’t have last year. As a result, I can’t ride the way I can.”

“It was a very difficult three days,” he concluded. “I’m happy with the work on the last day, even though I was still slow. But I felt progress. The feeling is slowly coming back, especially with used tires. We had to start somewhere.”

“We lost the first day and the first half of the second day. The feeling came back in the afternoon of the second day. I tried qualifying attacks, but if you don’t have the optimum feeling, you can’t do 1:56 or 1:57 minutes. “

“At least I got a bit closer with the race pace. At least I was doing 1:59 laps, while everyone was doing 1:58,” says Fernandez, speaking the bitter truth. “But I’m still a long way behind in qualifying.”

Visually, too, it was clear that he did not feel comfortable on the bike. He looked stiff when riding. “I lost confidence on the first two days. When you have this bad feeling here in Sepang, it’s difficult to get rid of it.”

That’s why his motto is: “We need a reset.” On February 19 and 20, there are two more days of testing at the Lusail Circuit in Qatar, which Fernandez urgently needs to regain confidence. “The bike is working, we can see that with the other riders.”

“Qatar was good last year. I want to start there and know what we did wrong here. Even though I have the new chassis, I want to start with the basic set-up from the Grand Prix because I felt good with it. Hopefully things will go better there. “



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