MotoGP Testing In Malaysia: Updated

Press Release | February 5, 2009

The following is from Yamaha… The two-month winter testing ban came to an end today with the first pre-season test of the 2009 MotoGP season, and Fiat Yamaha Team riders Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo were itching to get back to business with their latest-evolution YZR-M1s. At the traditional winter testing venue of Sepang in Malaysia, alongside the rest of the teams, the pair made a gentle start to their campaign with Rossi finishing the day third fastest and Lorenzo tenth. Both riders concentrated on developing the new chassis and also adapting to a new way of working with the single-tyre rule, which sees all riders now on Bridgestone tyres. Having received stitches to his left hand and left foot on Saturday after an accident at home, Rossi was unsure how comfortable he would be on the bike. He was pleased to find he was able to ride as he wanted however. He had a small slip-off this morning but was unhurt and completed 31 laps, stopping just before 4 pm after posting a best time of 2’02.324. Lorenzo had his first chance to try the new specification engine and was happy to find he had improved acceleration on the exit of the corners. The 21-year-old completed 61 laps with a best time of 2’03.894.Valentino Rossi Position: 3rd Time: 2’02.324 Laps: 31 “I am very happy because I was able to ride the bike today, despite the stitches in my hand and foot, and I was fast. I am not 100% because of the pain, but I have no problem to ride. I am also pleased because the engine is better and I feel very comfortable with the new chassis. We are adapting our way of testing to the new tyre rule and it is not so bad so far, even though we have more work to do. The bike needs to be gentler with the tyres now; normally I prefer harder tyres but from now on we’re going to need to be ‘sweeter’ with them. For sure it will be good for the show, because everyone will be starting from the same level with tyres. This morning I had a small fall, when I was riding very slowly. It was not so wet, but some patches of the track are lacking grip and that one especially seemed to have none at all! I stopped quite early this afternoon because I wanted to keep myself in good shape for tomorrow and the day after. After some laps my finger was hurting and it was also beginning to swell up. Tomorrow we will try something new with the electronics and we will also have to change the engine, because the one I used today was the same one that we used at the Jerez test and its mileage is now over.” Jorge Lorenzo Position: 10th Time: 2’03.894 Laps: 61 “Today has been a difficult first day back at work! My body is a little rusty after so much time off. In this condition it’s quite difficult to be fast, but I am happy because the bike seems to be better, especially the engine. In Japan they have been able to improve the acceleration and with the new chassis as well the bike isn’t moving so much on the exit of the corners. Unfortunately the circuit is not ok, because there are two corners with some problems and when you ride through them the bike is sliding too much, which is dangerous. This is why a couple of riders have had some crashes I think. I stopped quite early because I had already done a lot of laps and was very tired. Tonight I’m going to have a massage and try and get as much sleep as possible, and hopefully I will feel stronger tomorrow!” Times 1.                  Loris Capirossi (ITA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 2’01.869 2.                  Casey Stoner (AUS) Ducati Marlboro Team 2’02.038 3.                  Valentino Rossi (ITA) Fiat Yamaha Team 2’02.324 4.                  Chris Vermeulen (AUS) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 2’02.803 5.                  Toni Elias (SPA) Team San Carlo 2’02.886 6.                  Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Repsol Honda 2’03.088 7.                  Colin Edwards (USA) Tech 3 Yamaha 2’03.254 8.                  Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda 2’03.312 9.                  Sete Gibernau (SPA) Grupo Francisco Hernando 2’03.750 10.                  Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Fiat Yamaha Team 2’03.894 11.                  Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Marlboro Team 2’04.002 12.                  Alex De Angelis (RSM) Team San Carlo 2’04.396 13.                  Mika Kallio (FIN) Alice Team 2’04.405 14.                  James Toseland (GBR) Tech 3 Yamaha 2’04.502 15.                  Randy De Puniet (FRA) LCR Honda MotoGP 2’04.882 16.                  Yamaha Test Rider 1 (JPN) Yamaha Factory Racing 2’05.024 17.                  Yuki Takahashi (JPN) Scot Racing Team 2’05.098 18.                  Yamaha Test Rider 2 (JPN) Yamaha Factory Racing 2’05.140 19.                  Niccolo Canepa (ITA) Alice Team 2’05.270Sepang: Record Lap Casey Stoner (Ducati) 2007, 2’02.108Sepang: Best Lap V. Rossi (Yamaha) 2006, 2’00.605 The following is from Repsol Honda… The wait is over. The Repsol Honda Team was back in action at Sepang today following MotoGP’s traditional winter break. Riders Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso got to grips with the latest version of the Honda’s RC212V, a bike improved in balance, chassis and engine for a smoother driveability and better matching of the machine with Bridgestone tyres. The first MotoGP test of 2009 season got underway at the 5.542 km Sepang circuit in typically tropical conditions. Andrea Dovizioso spent the day getting a feel for the RC212V, working on his position on the bike and machine set up. Lap by lap he improved his feeling, setting the 6th fastest lap, 2m 03.088s was his best time. Dani Pedrosa set the 8th fastest lap, 2m 03.312s was his best time. The Spaniard focused on the bike set up to adapt the machine to the Bridgestone tyres.Andrea Dovisioso, 2m 03.088s (44 of 55 laps) “I’m very happy to be back in action. I was looking forward to ride my bike, and I particularly enjoy this place, I love the Sepang circuit and the hot temperatures that we find here. This morning we worked a lot on my position on the bike, testing different solutions, as I was still not comfortable enough. Finally we found a good solution and a good feeling with the bike, so in the afternoon we could continue to work on the chassis and concentrate more on the set up to adapt the machine to the Bridgestone tyres. This is a very important element at the moment, in fact the tyres are consistent and have a lot of potential but we aren’t using all the potential at the moment. This is a good feeling because we know that there is space for improvement”.Dani Pedrosa 2m 03.312s (33 of 44 laps) “Today we came back on track after two months break since the last test in Jerez. It was important to get back the feeling with the bike and resume the rhythm. After such a long time, I really looked forward to go back riding my bike. The priority at the moment is to adapt the bike to Bridgestone tyres, so we worked on the setting in order to get the best match between machine and tyres. Our target during these three days of testing is also to improve every single aspect of the bike in preparation of the season.”

The following is from Ducati… The opening test of the 2009 preseason got underway on a cloudy but dry day at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia today, with Ducati MotoGP Team riders Casey Stoner and Nicky Hayden both on track – the Australian returning to action after missing the previous test as he recovered from a scaphoid operation. Stoner is still not in peak condition and unable to push too hard, with his wrist feeling weak after three months out of action, yet he was on the pace throughout the day. The former World Champion reported positive feedback from the GP9 and was happy with the work done on the new carbon chassis and tyres. Hayden set about his Sepang testing programme in methodical manner and with his usual hard-working approach, making as few changes as possible to the bike in the early part of the three-day session. The American is happy with the new bike’s performance in corner entry but despite adapting well to the new Bridgestone tyres he is still looking for more stability from the bike in corner exit.Casey Stoner (Ducati MotoGP Team), fastest lap 2’02.038 (34 laps) “This morning was really difficult, I really didn’t feel comfortable on the bike. My wrist is still in a lot of pain and I honestly hoped it would be in better shape than this after three months since the operation. Even though the lap times were good from the start the wrist was still giving me a lot of problems – it is weak and painful under braking, especially in the first left-hand turn. I can’t do more than four or five laps at a time and there’s nothing I can do about that at the moment, other than hope that it improves over time. Sepang is a physically demanding circuit and probably not the best place to be riding for the first time after three months out. I preferred not to ride too much and tire myself out and hopefully it will already be a bit better tomorrow. Freddy, our physiotherapist, has a bit of work to do tonight! The GP9 is running well and I have the same positive feeling as the last two tests at Barcelona and Valencia. The chassis is completely different and we’ll have to work on improving the set-up but we have a good starting point and we can use the GP8 as a reference. The power delivery has improved and now we have more torque, which helps on the exit of the slower corners. Bridgestone have brought two compounds here that both work well, although I prefer the harder one because even though it is a little more difficult to ride it guarantees a more consistent performance.”Nicky Hayden (Ducati MotoGP Team), fastest lap 2’04.002 (60 laps) “We started out with the same set-up as Jerez, because after two months without riding it was better to go with something we knew. We haven’t made massive changes over the course of the day, mainly because before we do that I need to pick up my own pace. The bike feels good on the brakes and it is stable and precise in the fast corners. I’m struggling a bit on corner exit though because it still tends to pump quite a lot and I’m not used to that yet. We’re working to reduce it and we’ve got a couple of ideas that we’ll check out over the next two days. I like the new tyre rule. We’d got to a point where we were working too much on the tyres and there wasn’t enough time to work on the set-up of the bike. Now we just have a choice of two tyres, both of which work well even though I’m not able to get the most out of the harder compound yet, and that makes the job much easier for the team.”

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