April 20, 2016
The international season started a little later than I had planned. This is due the 2016 Kawasaki ZX10R being an entirely new bike and thus the official Kawasaki race parts kit is also new. We landed up having to wait for the parts kit so everything took a little longer.
We ended up getting three and a half days testing on the new bike. Testing was very positive. We had some good lap times and found a solid base setting. As testing progressed we made changes and began building a good understanding of the bike.
Race weekend Aragon:
From the Start of the race weekend at Aragon we seemed to struggle a lot due to the colder conditions than our testing in Valencia. The bike felt totally different. The team worked hard all weekend on improving the bike as we went. We are learning every lap what we require to get the new Benjan Agro on Kawasaki ZX10R up to the front.
Coming in to qualifying we were really confident in the set up changes that we had made. Unfortunately, due to a few small errors regarding pitting and timing, qualifying didn’t work out that great for us. We ended up P25 which was way off what we expected and had planned for.
Starting the race in 25th place is never an ideal situation. We were hoping to get a good start and work out way through the field from there. Sadly we were involved in the 11 bike pile up in turn 1 directly off the start. We were hit from behind by what felt like a bus. Fortunately for us the race was red flagged and we had the opportunity to get the bike fixed up for the restart. Staring again from a somewhat achy P25 we pushed to finish in P17 after the shortened (to 8 lap) race.
After a really frustrating weekend with setup issues and a crash we were really happy to finally finish the race. Huge props to our team for not giving up on working to improve the Benjan Agro on Kawasaki ZX10R. We say roll on Assen as we are super excited to apply what we learned from Argon.