Ex-Ducati and Suzuki riders Iannone left his Aprilia race debut at Qatar earlier this month, qualifying 19th and scoring just two points for finishing 14 th.

Team mate Aleix Espargaro enjoyed a competitive showing as he kicked off his next campaign with all the Noale-based manufacturer with a 10th-place finish, less than 10 seconds adrift of race champion Andrea Dovizioso.

Iannone confessed after preseason analyzing that he had low expectations for his first race aboard the RSGP, and says now that Aprilia isn’t yet with its current package for its whole potential.

“I think every rider needs the motorcycle to produce a step into most single area,” explained Iannone at a special Aprilia event at venue Mugello last weekend. “So this really is the task always.

“And for myself, I try to improve every week and every year. However, whatever the case, I think we’ve a good base and also here is definitely the most crucial.

“Throughout this period, we know a bit better the strongpoints for people, and I think these are the base of the bike. And for sure we need to enhance a tiny bit the acceleration, a little bit on turning.

“It’s important also we are still work like today, because I think that the base we have also we do not utilize at 100 percent. So, the priority is that we arrive with this bike at 100 percent.

“From this point, we placed to developing the bike, to examine, to comprehend better, other conditions. However, the priority today is this.”

Andrea Iannone, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

Andrea Iannone, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

Espargaro optimistic for Argentina

Espargaro says he’s targeting a second top-10 finish this weekend at Termas de Rio Hondo at Argentina, a course where he’s enjoyed success before.

“It is a course I love, in the past I’ve been always competitive now, I almost hit a rod position three years ago [with Suzuki], together with Aprilia I also was very competitive within the previous two seasons so I can not wait to go there,” he explained.

“This season’s bike in fifth and sixth gear is strong and there is along straight in Termas so I can not wait to go there.

“the main issue is to keep doing points, attempting to finish top ten in another two races and when we arrive to Jerez we’ve over 20 points, this is fantastic.”

Additional coverage by Matteo Nugnes and Khodr Rawi

Aleix Espargaro, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini


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