Third consecutive pole for Lorenzo, under Catalunya lap record Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Medium, Hard. Rear: Hard, Extra Hard (asymmetric) Jorge Lorenzo set his third pole position in as many weekends today, obtaining the...
Third consecutive pole for Lorenzo, under Catalunya lap record
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Medium, Hard. Rear: Hard, Extra Hard (asymmetric)
Jorge Lorenzo set his third pole position in as many weekends today, obtaining the most from his hard front and softer rear Bridgestone slicks as the track temperature rose to 56 degrees Celsius, the hottest of the weekend so far.
The hour-long qualifying session came to a frantic conclusion as Fiat Yamaha's Lorenzo dipped under the existing lap record to secure pole with this penultimate lap, edging out Ducati Team's Casey Stoner and long-time session leader Randy de Puniet of the LCR Honda MotoGP squad. Just 0.5seconds separated third to tenth positions.
Almost every rider recorded their best lap using Bridgestone's hard compound front slick tyre and the softer option rear, which provided better edge grip that benefitted laptimes particularly round the long and fast right-handers. The harder option rear slick is likely to be favoured for tomorrow's race however because of its added durability in these hot and tough conditions.
Already this weekend the tyres have had to cope with the highest track and ambient temperatures of the season, and Catalunya is one of the most demanding circuits of the year so a good bike setup that uses the tyres effectively and good tyre management by the riders will play key roles in determining the outcome of tomorrow's 25 lap race.
Those who have optimised bike, rider and tyre packages will be strong tomorrow. With the track temperature high, excess sliding will generate even higher tyre temperatures which will have a greater affect upon tyre performance.
Tohru Ubukata - Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department
"Today the conditions were almost the same as they were here last year and we have the same tyre specs, so there were no surprises and I am happy with tyre performance. Many riders will favour the harder asymmetric rear tyre for the race tomorrow, but I believe that the softer asymmetric rear is also a realistic option. Ben completed a long and consistent run of 20 laps on the softer rear today so I am confident of its race distance durability.
"I think tomorrow we will see a good comparison in the race between the two compound options. Riders who want better initial grip to get quickly into the rhythm of the race can choose the softer rear slick, whereas those who choose the harder option will have better consistency towards the end of the race."