PHOTOGRAPHY BY GOLD & GOOSE
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA, MAR. 3 – It was ore of the same on day two of the MotoGP tire test at Phillip Island – – Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo was the fastest of the factory men on hand at the test. It was, however, much hotter. The track temperature was 123 degrees – 60 degrees hotter than last year’s Australian Grand Prix – sidelining the MotoGP factory riders for a good three hours in the afternoon due to the less than optimum temperature for race simulation.
“The only negative point is we wasn’t able to make the perfect test for Bridgestone because it too hot,” Ducati’s Andrea Dovisioso said. “Over 50 degrees [celsius] is impossible to found these condition in we could race. So I don’t know if for Bridgestone was the best.”
But although they weren’t able to do full race simulation, there was a general consensus among the riders that there was one of the compound tires that was the closest match in performance to last year’s tire.
The one to do the most laps on that tire was the lone man for the Repsol Honda team, Dani Pedrosa.
“I choose the best of all the tires from yesterday and today and did the long run,” Pedrosa said. “I did 20 [laps]. It was quite constant the lap time. But they have to check the tire and collect some more information around.”
Both Valentino Rossi and Dovisioso’s teammate Cal Crutchlow were able to do 20 laps as well, but broken up in 14 then 6 laps. And both riders concurred with Pedrosa.
“Yeah, I’m happy enough,” Crutchlow said about the day’s work. “I think we can always go faster. There’s always room to improve. And we worked hard today in the morning to find a setting we were happy with and then as we said just try and do a little bit of a longer run.
“I don’t think Bridgestone were too happy with anybody doing a simulation today because of the heat. They were maybe a little concerned for the tire. They saw that we had no problem with the tire because Dani [Pedrosa] made 20 laps, I made 20 but six and then 14 and Vale did the same, six and then 14.”
Although Lorenzo was fastest again today, he did so on last year’s race tire and was not happy with the set of tires slotted for him to test today – the tires with a change in construction.
“We try a different tire from the standard [last year’s tire],” Lorenzo said. “The one that Valentino [Rossi] thought was not so bad yesterday, was probably the best that he try. But for me in the fourth lap already was dropping so much. So I decide to stop. Not to finish these 14 laps that we have to make.”
Tomorrow the riders are scheduled to test the tires in race simulation. That is unless the weather has a say about it as it is currently forecasted to rain.
For Lorenzo, if rain gets in the way of longer runs on the compound tires he preferred from yesterday he will have to rely on the other rider’s judgment.
“If this happens we have to hope that the rest of the riders make good comments to the Bridgestone and choose the right tire,” Lorenzo said. “We hope not to rain tomorrow and have this option to try race simulation. But if this doesn’t happen some other riders may have. So I hope they chose the right one for everyone.”
The man that had the most consecutive laps on the tire, Pedrosa, felt that without full race simulation that that tire was the best choice.
“Yeah, I mean I test the tires. I know which tire I feel’s better for the track,” Pedrosa said. “It’s pretty much matching the other riders.”
“Yeah,” Rossi said about it being okay if no testing tomorrow. “It is important good weather for tomorrow. But not crucial.”
2014 MotoGP Phillip Island Tire Test Results
1. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1:29.133
2. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1:29.381
3. Andrea Dovisioso (Ducati) 1:29.387
4. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 1:29.516
5. Cal Crutchlow (Ducati) 1:29.660