LOWES BATTLES THE PAIN IN SPAIN
Sam Lowes was struggling at the Jerez test to overcome neck injuries sustained last time out at Valencia, but he came away after the three days positive with what he managed to achieve on his new Motogp Aprilia.
The Lincolnshire racer was left with neck injuries after crashing at turn 12 during the Valencia test. The injury limited his movement on the bike and restricted his track time at Jerez.
Despite that, the chance to spend three more days working with his new crew and tackle some niggling issues on the Aprilia RS-GP machine’s basic set-up, means that he’s pleased with what he achieved.
He said: “It’s normal to get criticised, and I’ve already seen some people saying Eugene Laverty should be replacing me – but I shouldn’t have even been riding! If it was a Moto2 test, I’d be sat at home. But I still managed to do some laps, understand more things on the bike, and to be in the debriefs and to understand what’s going on. It’s just been little things to help me out next year, like learning the guys’ names!
“It’s always better to be fast, but I’m not fit. A Motogp bike isn’t a toy, it’s an amazing bit of kit, and just by doing those laps and being two seconds and more off my team-mate, it’s been enough to learn what I need to do.”
Lowes was delighted once again with the Aprilia package while team-mate Aleix Espargaró proved how good the Aprilia is by setting the fourth fastest time of the test.
But Lowes insisted: “It’s Motogp, so I’m not expected to go out and win the first race. Aleix has a lot of experience, and that’s very good for me. Aleix is a solid Motogp racer, and I don’t think I’ll be too far away from him in the first race. He was hired to get results, and I’m the rookie – I’ve got time to work at it. I’ve got a fire inside me, the team is very good, and the bike is very good. It’s not at the level of the top bikes but trust me… it is close!”
Still recovering from an injured neck, Lowes was happy just to be on the Aprilia