Repsol Honda riders Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso commenced their final test session of 2008 at Jerez today. Despite bitter cold and strong winds, the pair had a useful day at the recently resurfaced track, Pedrosa setting the fastest lap of the day, well inside his own lap record.
Pedrosa is riding two 2009 RC212V prototype machines, while Dovizioso ran some back-to-back tests between a 2009 prototype and a 2008 spec RCV. The 2009 prototype is designed to offer riders better controllability, in both engine and chassis performance.
Although track temperatures only reached 23 degrees this afternoon, Pedrosa was more than half a second inside the lap record he established during his runaway victory in last April’s Spanish Grand Prix. Dovizioso showed his enthusiasm by being the first rider on track this morning, despite the cold, and was happy with his first day on the 2009 prototype.
The team will continue development and set-up work tomorrow, their final day of MotoGP action before the sport’s winter testing moratorium. Their next outing is at Sepang, Malaysia, on February 5, 6 and 7.
Dani Pedrosa, fastest lap: 1m 39.525s (lap 40 of 41 laps)
“They resurfaced the whole track in August and the new asphalt is very grippy and smooth, so I was able to do some good lap times despite the cold temperatures and the strong winds which we had to deal with. Today we focused mainly on the engine, but the low temperatures meant that we started quite late this morning and stopped quite early this afternoon, so I need another day of testing to give a better evaluation of the latest engine configuration which is quite different from before. We also did some work on electronics, working to improve corner-entry performance and so on, but I think we need some more time on the motorcycle to really understand this latest engine configuration.”
Andrea Dovizioso,, fastest lap: 1m 41.655 (lap 48 of 48 laps)
“Conditions were not perfect this morning, it was very windy and very cold, but we need to find a good feeling with the bike because it’s quite different to what I’m used to and we have many things to try and to adjust to my riding style, so we need to do a lot of laps, that’s why we were first on track this morning! I am happy because my feeling is coming better, though it’s still not perfect, of course. We tried many different things today which improved my feeling, like adjusting the clutch, for example. We did three or four exits with the 2008 bike and then moved to the 2009 prototype machine, and the feeling was immediately much better, so we stayed focused on that bike. The whole package is better with the 2009 bike, everything is better, it feels more controllable. It is a good sign that the new prototype is better first time out. Tomorrow we will continue to work on adapting the bike for my style.”
1. Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) 1.39.525
2. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 1.40.135
3. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1.41.163
4. Colin Edwards (Yamaha) 1.41.390
5. Alex De Angelis (Honda Gresini) 1.41.468
6. James Toseland (Yamaha) 1.41.539
7. Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda) 1.41.655
8. Toni Elias (Honda Gresini) 1.41.679
9. Niccolo Canepa (Ducati) 1.42.074
10 Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 1.42.098
11 Mika Kallio (Ducati) 1.42.837
12 Sete Gibernau (Ducati) 1.42.943
13 Vitto Guareschi (Ducati) 1.43.642
14 Yuki Takahashi (Honda Team Scot) 1.44.360