Smith admits to being 'too conservative'
16 February 2017 – KTM's Bradley Smith has admitted that he is riding "too conservatively" after finishing at the bottom of the times on the first two days of this week's test at Phillip Island.
Smith and Pol Espargaró have switched from Tech 3 Yamaha to continue as team-mates at KTM, which will make its full debut in 2017, after wildcarding at last year's finale.
KTM has featured towards the back of the field throughout pre-season testing so far, while Smith has been slower than Espargaró in all bar one session, the final day at Sepang.
Although happy with the consistency of his race pace, Smith concedes he needs to be more committed with the RC16 over one lap, and "open the throttle a little bit more".
"I think today was already quite a good improvement [over yesterday]," commented the British racer, who is still recovering from a knee injury which impacted his 2016 season.
"Especially on old tyres we were able to be a lot more consistent, I was able to do some 1m31s at the end of the day, on full race distance, so that was like a second improvement.
"But still I need to adjust my riding style for one lap on the new tyres. I'm still a little bit too conservative, so we'll get our head around that. I just need to open the throttle a little bit more.
"It seems to be high-speed corners that I'm struggling in the most, I need to go with a little bit more commitment, which is easier said than done when you're riding a new motorcycle.
"But I'm making improvements, so tomorrow I just need to make another one."
Espargaró finished 17th and 19th out of 22 runners on the first two days.