Jorge Martín has started the Aragón Grand Prix on the right foot. After a season full of mistakes and ups and downs, and once he got over the bump of not being promoted to the official Ducati team in 2023, the man from Madrid seems to be rediscovering his best version.
The satellite driver finished the first day of free practice at the top of the time table, with a time of 1:47.402. Martín declared that he was “happy” after the afternoon session, but explained that he still has several tenths to go before he can play the Spanish anthem at Motorland.
“It’s the first time I’ve led on a Friday, so it’s positive. But the sensations are not entirely good, really. I’m missing a couple of tenths of pace to be able to fight for the victory, so I have to find something that help me improve.”
Jorge bluntly pointed out the lack of grip on the Aragonese asphalt, which he said “is not fantastic”. “ The tires have a giant sag after two laps, regardless of the compound.” Later, he added that they ended up “with the tires full of dust”.
“Already yesterday, when we went around the circuit, we saw that the curbs had a lot of dirt. The tires break a lot, I imagine that is why; the average tire, which I think will be the race tire, drops half a second after two laps , so it’s hard to be consistent.”
Martín also spoke about the changes that he introduced in his riding style and that are helping him to improve his times. “Since the Misano test we have improved the braking. We have made a step, and I have kept it here. We have improved compared to the other Ducati riders, so I am happy with that.”
“I’ve changed it [braking style] a bit with the set-up, but above all being more aggressive under braking. Entering a little more from the side, like in Moto2, helps the Ducati to stop better,” he explained. .
Thus, the former Moto3 champion feels he has the chance to fight for victory. “I look quite competitive, I don’t think I have fewer chances than other drivers. It is clear that Fabio and Pecco have a couple of tenths more in terms of pace, but improving two tenths on a 1:48.000 circuit is not as difficult as on other circuits, so I hope to take that little step and be there for the race”.
Regarding the return of Marc Márquez, who rode in the top ten after several months away from the World Cup circuit, he was impressed. “He’s in the top ten on his comeback, so plenty to go ‘calm’ and recover.”
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