Gino Rea cannot wait to get his elbows out as he begins his Moto2 career in earnest in Qatar on Sunday.
The 22-year old Epsom racer is competing at Doha’s Losail circuit, where the riders will be racing at night under floodlights in the first round of the 2012 season.
Rea, who signed for Team Gresini last month, admitted testing had not been ideal due to suspension and rear grip issues, but, with the bike being adapted and improved, he is confident he can have a strong race in Qatar even though it is his first time racing in the dark.
“I really can’t wait,” he said.
“Just being out here in Doha is unbelievable and then to race in the MotoGP paddock under floodlights at the Qatar Losail circuit is just going to be incredible.
“I have watched last year’s Moto2 race at Qatar plenty of times so I know which way it goes.
“At the Jerez test, our bike problem was exaggerated because of the nature of the corners, so, hopefully, here at Qatar the problem won’t be so big.
“I have an experienced team so I will have a long chat with my crew chief, walk the track with him and go over last year’s data telemetry.”
Settling into a new team can take time but Rea already feels at home and has set out his aims for the season.
“The Gresini Moto2 team are fantastic and have made me feel very welcome,” he added.
“I like how they have the same desire to win as I do.
“It’s difficult to say precise aims at the moment but my first goal is to get in the top 10, then of course I want to podium and win.”
Rea will be joined in Doha by personal trainer Kevin Horne and his dad David who both made the trip to support the young racer.
“After a year and half training together, Kev didn’t want to miss my debut MotoGP race,” he said.
“Others will be tuning in on television when live qualifying starts from Friday on Eurosport.
“I can’t wait to get them elbows out.”