Mugello’s stunning but dauntingly fast and inviting curves set the scene for a gripping opening bout at the Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley and the sixth round of 2023 MotoGP. The GASGAS Factory Racing Team watched star rookie Augusto Fernandez try to unlock the secrets of the layout and also cope with changing weather to take 20th in the Sprint.
The Italian Grand Prix was not blessed with the most stable weather conditions as warm and humid conditions on Friday turned into rainfall during the Sprint on Saturday and then heavy showers.
AF37, who recorded a fantastic 4th place last time out at Le Mans, searched for his rhythm during practice but his bid for top billing in quali was dented by a fall at Turn 14 late into Practice 3. AF37 had to use his spare bike for Q1 and took 21st place. When it came time for the Sprint Augusto opted for a conservative approach in the damp and rode safely to 20th.
Augusto Fernandez, 21st in qualification, 20th in the Sprint:
“A hard day. We were improving in qualifying and I was making steps every time I was out on the track and with the bike but then we had that crash and I lost a bit of confidence. When the rain came in the Sprint then it was a bit disastrous for me and nothing like the feeling I had in Le Mans. I need to be more competitive for sure. Luckily, we still have tomorrow and I know we can improve more and be in the fight for points.”