Barbera happy with second Top 10 qualifying result
The third and final practice session for the USGP saw the grid positions decided at Laguna Seca this afternoon, with Jorge Lorenzo and Casey Stoner again involved in a two-way battle for pole position and the Spaniard again coming out on top. However, the pace of Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso should see a close race tomorrow. The pace of the front men was inside the lap record here, set in 2008 by Stoner (1.21.488) and not far shy of the Australian’s pole record (1.20.700) from the same season.
It wasn’t just the experienced front men who grabbed the headlines today, however, with Páginas Amarillas Aspar rider Héctor Barberá one of a group of impressive rookies that should provide an entertaining sub-plot to the race tomorrow. Barberá shave 1.5 seconds off his pace from yesterday’s opening session in this morning’s free practice and then found another half second in the afternoon. The Spaniard lines up at the head of the fourth row in tenth position and is hoping to sign off with a solid result before taking a well-earned summer break.
10th Héctor Barberá 1.22.366 (30 laps): “I am really happy although I would have obviously preferred to be on the third row. I am only a tenth of a second off eighth place but tenth is still good for me. The team has worked really well and I really enjoyed myself on the bike. Hopefully tomorrow I can have a good start and an even better race, to improve on my best result so far. On one hand I’m happy because everything comes much easier when you’re enjoying yourself on the bike but at the same time we are showing that we are competitive and there is no reason for us to back off – you always have to strive to improve. I’ll be going out to give my best tomorrow and a lot will depend on my start and the first few laps because our race pace is there. The best thing about today was that we kept improving little set-up details on the Ducati and made progress throughout. I think we have gathered a lot of experience over the eight races so far and we’ve learned from our mistakes, so if we can put it all into practice tomorrow I think I can be fighting for a top eight finish, which would be a good result for us.”
Source: Aspar Team