Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Bradley Smith produced a superb performance at the Italian Grand Prix to clinch 5th and his fourth top six finish this year aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1. The young British rider began the race from 11th on the grid but highly confident of speeding to a top result after finishing this morning’s warm up in 5th place. As the lights went out, Smith bolted forward to meet the first corner in 4th, having overtaken 7 riders before he completed the lap one place back. The following stages of the race saw him running in 8th and after posting a series of consistent lap times, his strong rhythm saw him locked in a battle with Cal Crutchlow at the mid point of the 23 lap sprint. The British star kept plugging away and with 20 laps completed he was in 6th before soaring across the finish line one place higher. The successful result elevates him to the position of the leading satellite rider in the 2015 MotoGP world championship standings and he now looks to ride to a similar placement at the Monster Energy Gran Premi de Catalunya.

Meanwhile, Pol Espargaro met the chequered flag in 6th place and right behind his teammate in the MotoGP battle at the legendary Mugello circuit, as he closed his weekend with a strong result. The 2014 rookie of the year opened his day with a 6th place finish in the warm up after qualifying in 10th for today’s 23 lap dash. He shot off the starting line and ran behind his teammate before completing the first lap in 6th. As the distance to the end decreased, Espargaro dropped back to 9th but remained focused and rode rapidly to create a gap to the pursuing riders. Moreover, his firm race pace allowed him to home back in on Smith in the final section of the Grand Prix and as the race drew to a close, the 23 year old Spanish rider finished just behind his teammate by four tenths of a second. The result today marks a superb return from his recent arm surgery and now the 2013 Moto2 World Champion confidently looks on to his home Grand Prix in a fortnight at the Circuito de Catalunya.

Bradley Smith
Position : 5th Championship : 6th  Points :57

Bradley Smith - 2015"I’m really pleased to close this weekend with a 5th place finish after a superb race that was a real pleasure to ride! Although my qualifying position was not fantastic, it spurred me on to get a good start, which is exactly what I did and then to come home with 5th is great for me, the team and the championship standings. I had fun battling with Cal and I really gave it my all, plus the bike was strong today, even though there are a few things that we need to address in the coming weeks. One of these was the handling of the bike in the beginning of the race, yet, there’s not a lot we can do with the setting to close the gap in the opening laps. I am sure Yamaha understands where we are struggling and I’m convinced they will do their very best to assist us in solving this in the future. Still, the bike is working really well at every track we have visited so far so I look forward to the next race in Barcelona, which is almost a home race for me because I live quite close by!"



Pol Espargaro
Position : 6th Championship : 8th  Points : 45

Pol Espargaro - 2015"After the recent surgery and two weeks without training, this was the optimum that we could obtain, even though it is not an incredible result, as we are behind our team mate. Still, in normal conditions I think we could have been stronger as I suffered a lot with the changes of direction and I could hardly move the bike. Nevertheless, we were right behind Cal and Bradley and I even managed to come back on them during the closing stages of the race when I was really tired. Therefore I think there are plenty of positives to take from today. Now we have to keep working as Montmelo, which is my home race is coming next and I'm highly motivated to score a strong result there, so we have to be physically prepared."



Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :

"It was a great race today and to have four Yamaha’s in the top six means a lot to me and for everyone else involved in this project. They are doing a superb job and we are really pleased to be a part of their MotoGP effort. With regards to Tech3, both riders did an excellent job and to illustrate how strong we are as a team at the moment, we are third in the team championship, ahead of the mighty Factory Repsol Honda team! We have worked really hard and apart from the Texas race with Pol, we’ve had no DNF’s. So our two, young riders have learnt to keep pushing and remain consistent. Today we completed the race only 15 seconds from the front and we all know how dominating Lorenzo was. There was an incredible fight between Cal, Brad and Pol for the leading satellite position and we came out first and second in this battle. However, I must say sorry to Cal as he is always in our hearts because he used to be a part of our team. Anyway, I will admit that I got a bit nervous towards the end of the race as we saw Pol close right in on Bradley and it would have been such a pity if there was a collision. Yet, fortunately they were both sensible and didn’t risk anything. For Brad, he worked more for the race than for qualifying, but had a great GP and a very strong weekend overall as he has been fast from Friday on. On the other hand, we have been thinking a lot about Pol because of his operation, which was a success and we saw him catching Cal and Brad at the end which means he is clearly more comfortable. His arm pump issue has been solved and it will allow him to understand how to improve more. We are very happy go to the Monster Energy Gran Premi de Catalyuna next, which is the home round for Pol, so lets see what we can do!” 



Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Pol Espargaro produced a resolute effort at the twisting and legendary Mugello circuit to qualify in 10th position for the 23 lap race tomorrow. The Spaniard got straight up to speed as soon as the morning session began as he continued to alter the set up of his Yamaha YZR-M1, before clinching 5th at the end of FP3 with a best lap of 1’47.175. Once the tightly contested QP2 session commenced, Espargaro leapt into action and began circulating the track at a rapid pace. His best final time was 1’47.050 which was set on his penultimate lap and resulted in him being only 0.180 back from the second row. He will begin round 6 of the 2015 MotoGP World Championship from the head of the fourth row and remains fully intent on seizing a top position to finish the Mugello weekend on a positive note.

On the opposite side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team garage, Bradley Smith will begin the 30th MotoGP race at the Mugello circuit, from 11th on the grid. The 24 year old rider started the day by closing the FP3 session with a lap time of 1’47.495 that left him in 8th position and able to progress straight through to QP2. Here, the British star pushed hard throughout the session before producing a flying lap of 1’47.090 as the chequered flag fell. This saw him finish just a blink of an eye behind his teammate by 0.040 and additionally, he set the fastest top speed of the Yamaha MotoGP bikes which was 344.2 km/h. Tomorrow, Smith intends to continue his notable form so far in the 2015 MotoGP season and his sights are firmly set on scoring a solid result in order to continue his fight for the lead in the satellite bike standings.

Pol Espargaro
Position : 10th Time : 1'47.050  Laps : 7

Pol Espargaro - 2015"After a qualifying session like today, it's quite difficult to be positive. However, we know that we gave our maximum and we have to be satisfied with the time as well as the performance of the bike. We did the best we can, but all of the times are really tight and there are many riders in front of us who have soft tyres or other advantages, who shouldn’t be our rivals in the race. We were able to improve the issues that I had to face yesterday and the team did a great job in helping me. Our rhythm is quite promising and we are all set for tomorrow’s race. However, to start from the fourth row is not ideal because in MotoGP, it’s very important to begin the race as close to the front as possible. Nevertheless, I made the best lap that I could so I am satisfied that I gave it everything I had, yet it’s frustrating to end up in 10th. We need to do a little bit of work now as we have found something else that we must amend, yet I am confident we can solve this for tomorrow. I am ready to do my best at Mugello and I know that I need a good start and then I have to make up the places that we lost today in qualifying."



Bradley Smith
Position : 11th Time : 1'47.090  Laps : 8

Bradley Smith - 2015"I am certain that I can score a good result in the race tomorrow, despite making things a bit difficult for myself by qualifying in 11th. With the times being so close, it was tough and I didn’t have a perfect lap around the circuit in QP2. We changed the bike quite a lot in FP4 in order to gain a good setup for the race. Yet, when you make big changes, it’s a bit of a gamble, especially for qualifying so it was difficult to extract the best that I could in such a small amount of time, which is why I am back in 11th. However, I still feel confident for the race as the setup we have now is very consistent. Usually my starts are good so tomorrow, I need to have a strong launch and then fight onwards. There’s a lot of open bikes in front of me but at the end of the day, the race is long so I simply need to try and overtake as many riders as I can throughout the race, be smart at the beginning and we will see where we can go from there."



Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Bradley Smith kicked off his Mugello campaign with a confident surge to 5th position in the combined standings on the opening day of action at the highly anticipated Gran Premio d’Italia TIM. The British rider started the morning practice positively by clinching 8th place with a time of 1’48.349 that left him only 0.045 behind the 5th placed rider. As the sun shone down on the meandering 5.245 kilometre track throughout the day, Smith began his FP2 run with intent to continue the vital set up work with the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team. After having successfully evaluated all of the available tyre options, the 23 year old met the chequered flag with a lap of 1’48.038. This time resulted in him seizing 5th as well as the honours of being the top satellite rider. In addition, his final time was just under two tenths of a second from third and leaves him fully primed for a successful qualifying performance tomorrow. 

On the other hand, Pol Espargaro completed the first day of practice in the Tuscan hills with a finish of 10th place aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1. The young Spaniard looked to bounce back from his recent right arm surgery and started his Mugello weekend by finishing in 9th, merely 0.041 behind his teammate. Having begun the day with some solid set up work, he looked to refine and continue this progress in the afternoon, in preparation for the 23 lap sprint on Sunday. As the end of the FP2 session inched closer, the 2013 Moto2 World Champion sped to a best time of 1’48.283 on his penultimate lap that left him in 10th overall, but only 0.159 back from 6th. He will carry on his work in free practice 3 as he looks to guide his Yamaha YZR-M1 to a strong qualifying position in final 15 minute shootout tomorrow.

Bradley Smith
Position : 5th Time : 1'48.038  Laps : 42

Bradley Smith - 2015"The first day has been really positive and I am pleased with how the bike feels at this circuit, which I am a big fan of. We have been fast from the word go which is a good opening to the weekend especially as we have struggled here a little bit in the past. Yet today, I was able to ride the bike exactly how I wanted to and I sampled both types of compound for the front and rear tyres, so now we have a good indication of which direction to head towards. I’m even happier as I still feel there is room for improvement as my lap was not quite perfect. Tomorrow we need to work a small amount on the balance of the bike, especially in the afternoon when the temperature increases, as this will be critical for the race on Sunday. Overall, we’re less than two tenths back from the factory Yamaha of Lorenzo, so we are in a good place, but tomorrow we need to make another step forward to get into the 1’47 lap times."



Pol Espargaro
Position : 10th Time : 1'48.283  Laps : 39

Pol Espargaro - 2015"The day started in a good fashion this morning, but the second free practice session was a bit more challenging. For some reason, I didn't feel too comfortable on the bike and the lap times did not come easily, so we have to check the data and make a good plan for tomorrow. Nevertheless, the gap to the guys in front is very small as we are all so close together, which is positive, but for today a 10th position finish is nothing to be happy about. However, there are some positives to take. We tried a front tyre which I actually quite liked but the best thing is that my arm is definitely doing much better than I expected and I hope it won't influence my race too much."




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