Pedrosa Leads Aragon Test

Cycle News Staff | September 4, 2012

Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa put his Honda RC213V on top of the timesheets during the first day of a two-day test at Motorland Aragon today in Spain, the Spaniard taking advantage of perfect conditions to work on suspension and electronics settings as he searches for rear traction and smoother engine delivery.

Pedrosa, who has won the last two races and is 13 points behind Jorge Lorenzo in the MotoGP World Championship, completed 35 laps with a best lap time of 1:47.983. Lorenzo was second best in the private Yamaha/Honda test with a best of 1:48.471, according to Honda.

Pedrosa was joined at the test by Jonathan Rea, the World Superbike rider replacing the injured Casey Stoner on the team’s second RC213V. Rea turned in 69 laps and finished with a best lap of 1:50.679.

“In the morning we did some laps to get back into the rhythm and remember the lines on this track, then in the afternoon we really started to work on the bike set up,” Pedrosa said. “We worked a lot with the suspension trying to improve the rear grip especially and with the mapping and electronics to make the bike smoother. The track conditions will be better tomorrow, so the target is to stick with the same plan, try the same things and see if we can improve a little more with the suspension because the configuration today was not perfect. This is the last test of the season, so it’s important to take advantage of it for the upcoming races and see if we can get something else from the bike.”

Rea was continuing to learn the MotoGP bike – a far cry from his CBR1000RR World Superbike Honda.

“Today I was just getting a good feeling between me and the machine because it still feels very strange,” Rea said. “I had to work a lot on my brake style today; normally in Superbike I don’t use so much rear brake, but here it seems that I have to learn to use it in every corner. Just concentrating on this and getting a better setting on the brakes and trying to do longer runs on the tires because for me it’s very different at the end. I feel comfortable on the bike, the riding position is good, but I just need to understand how the traction control is working, what happens when the tires drop down and be more comfortable with the setup.”

The two teams will complete the test tomorrow.