Charlie Nesbitt recorded his first points-scoring Moto3 Junior World Championship finishes of the season at Valencia on Sunday, charging through the pack taking the chequered flag for 14th position in race one and an even more impressive tenth place in race two, having started both races from 30th on the grid.
The Swindon youngster had a frustrating start to the weekend, as he was hampered by a mystery technical problem. The team worked tirelessly making numerous changes to try and help Charlie before discovering a gremlin in the electronics. With this rectified, Nesbitt was able to get down to business, however, he would need the first qualifying session to regain his confidence and to make further set-up changes.
Final qualifying was a much better session for Nesbitt, clearly back in the groove and one of the faster riders on the circuit; track conditions were slightly unfavourable in comparison to the earlier session meaning that lap times were a fraction down, but most importantly his confidence was back, and he was ready for the challenge of the following days two races.
Having made further set-up refinements, Nesbitt lined up for the start of the first 18 lap race from the outside of row ten. He gained ten places and was running inside the top 20 by the end of lap seven, and continued his way through the field setting his fastest lap on lap 15, to eventually finish in 14th position taking his first championship points of 2018.
Nesbitt decided to run a medium compound rear tyre for race two which he felt would give him better grip towards the end of the race. A red flag incident in the early laps involving one of his team mates, Sergio Garcia, led to a short delay.
With the race distance reduced to 12 laps, Nesbitt made a great start, passing ten riders on the opening lap. Once again he fought his way through the mid-pack and this time progressed up to the group battling for the podium, setting faster lap times than those ahead of him in the closing stages. He took the chequered flag in a richly deserved and impressive tenth place and in a very close group, just 1.2 seconds away from the podium, which was excellent considering he had started from towards the back of the grid.
“I was frustrated at the start of the weekend and disappointed with my grid position, but I’m really happy with the two races. I can’t thank the team and all my sponsors enough, the support is fantastic. I’m pleased to have some points on the board, and looking forward to the next race at Le Mans," said Nesbitt.