Danny Kent maintained his impressive pre-season testing form in the new Moto3 four-stroke class today when he ended the second day of the final test in Jerez with the third quickest time.
The British teenager set a best pace of 1.47.854 to finish behind pre-season title favourite Maverick Vinales and Red Bull KTM team-mate Sandro Cortese.
Kent finished 0.468s behind Spaniard Vinales, who led the way with a best lap of 1.47.386, which was marginally faster than Cortese’s best pace of 1.47.414 on the opening day.
Kent, who dominated the previous winter test in Jerez, said he was struggling to ride with the same confident feeling this week.
He put that down to an increase in track temperature with the Jerez track again basking in glorious sunshine, though the day was affected by a strong wind blowing.
He told MCN: “I’m still not 100% there and I don’t feel as confident with the bike as I did at the last test. I’m not as confident in the slower corners. Before I could get on the throttle and keep the line.
"But now I get on the throttle and the bike wants to push wide and when I pull it back in it starts to slide. But that could be down to the way I am riding and I’ll have a look at the data. With the hotter temperature, the tyres seem to be reacting a lot differently.
"At the last test they were good for the first four laps but they were really good. But now they last a lot longer but the grip in my opinion is not as good. We’ve got to change the set-up of the bike for it to suit these conditions better.”
Mahindra rider Danny Webb had a disastrous second day and he was languishing down in 22nd place on the timesheets.
His day was dictated by persistent engine problems and he ended with a best time of 1.50.549 to finish over three seconds off the pace.
He was over a second slpwer than the first day and he told MCN: "It has been a disaster. We had an engine problem all day and I think I only managed to get in five decent laps. We've got loads of work to do on the engine to get it more consistent and more powerful."