The first day of the Grand Prix of Catalunya went very well for NTS RTW Racing GP. Bo Bendsneyder finished in the top 10 in both practices and with an eleventh place in the combined standings, the Dutchman is nominated to qualify directly for Q2. It was also a good day for Piotr Biesiekirski.
Bo Bendsneyder's ninth place in FP1 and eighth place in FP2 put a big smile on the faces at NTS RW Racing GP. After all the disappointments and setbacks of the past weeks, the team could use such a boost. Bendsneyder himself too, not least. With the 1.44.863 he put down in FP1 - which at the time was good for third place for a while - he took eleventh place in the combined position. A place in the top fourteen entitles him to direct placement for Q2, and thus a place in the first four starting rows. Moreover, the laptime was not a one-time fluke. Although Bendsneyder was unable to improve his time in FP2, as was the case with most Moto2 riders, he was constantly close to it.
Piotr Biesiekirski also felt clearly more at home on the Circuit de Catalunya. The young Pole, who replaces Jesko Raffin, who is recovering at home, knows the track from the European Championship and was thus able to fully concentrate on getting to know the NTS better. This was particularly visible in FP2: Biesiekirski always knew a number of riders behind him. It wasn’t until the last minute that he was pushed back to P30. With 1.46.816 he was one of only nine riders who managed to improve the times in FP2.
Bo Bendsneyder: “This was a very good first day. I am very happy with the feeling I have with the bike. We have gotten the balance a lot better. In Misano already, actually, but we were so far behind that we couldn’t show it at the time. This is not the case here and now it does show. The feeling was good from the first session and so were the times. In FP2 there was a lot of wind and that was difficult. That is why we waited for a while to go back out again, until the last twenty minutes. I consciously played it safe with that strong wind, but the last three laps I was able to push and was able to improve my times again, on used tires, to finish in eighth.”
Piotr Biesiekirski: “I’m happy with today. This morning we started off where we left in Misano. My gap to the leader was similar, around three seconds, but I felt much more relaxed than on last Sunday, so that’s a big positive. We then improved the bike for the second session. I also started to understand it much more and felt really comfortable in the afternoon. My pace was quicker and more consistent even if the conditions were much worse than in the morning.”