Rd.03 RED BULL GRAND PRIX OF THE AMERICAS: Sunday, April 23, 2017
Ambient: 21℃ / Track: 33℃
After a breathtaking 19-lap battle among the leaders, IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia rider Takaaki Nakagami crossed the finish line in 3rd place, in the Grand Prix of the Americas today, while team-mate Khairul Idham Pawi finished the race in 25th place.
Having set the fastest lap time in the morning warm-up session, Nakagami contested a scorching battle in the lead group from the outset. The Japanese rider climbed up to 3rd on Lap 13 by taking advantage of his strong braking. He maintained flawless riding until the end, and crossed the checkered flag in 3rd for a podium finish.
Meanwhile, Pawi started the race in 28th position on Row 10, tenaciously moving up the field to cross the line in 25th place.
Round 4, the Spanish Grand Prix commences on May 5, with free practice for the intermediate class starting at 10:55 local time (GMT +2).
Takaaki Nakagami (3rd, 41'26.887, +6.809)
“I am very happy to finish the race on the podium today because this is one of my favorite tracks, but I didn’t have good results here until now. From the beginning of the race, I stayed calm and found the opportunity to overtake, then kept consistent pace till the end. Now we go to Europe with this momentum, so I am very motivated. In Jerez, we will give our best to stop Franco (Morbidelli)’s lead!”
Khairul Idham Pawi (25th, 42'28.215, +1'08.137)
“Although we have almost solved our front issue, the problem with the rear sliding was still there in the race, and it was very difficult to keep a good rhythm. In Jerez, I felt good in pre-season testing, so hopefully we will fix our problem in the next race weekend.”
Tadayuki Okada - Team Manager
“Taka’s race pace was almost identical to the lead even after he moved up to 3rd, and consequently he took podium for the second time this season, which was good. However, we didn’t win the race, so we need meticulous preparation for the next one in Jerez. Pawi had a difficult race because he couldn’t improve his lap times. We will compare data with pre-season testing to find the best solution for him.”