LIMITED TRACK TIME FOR ROSSI AT MUGELLO, HAYDEN WORKS ON SETUP
Turning fewer than ten laps on the first day of practice at Mugello prevented Valentino Rossi from doing better than thirteenth-best, but there are nonetheless promising signs. In the first session, some technical problems forced the Italian to return to the garage after a positive first outing. The afternoon weather was erratic once again, rendering the second practice session useless.
Rossi’s teammate Nicky Hayden began working on a setup for the step 2 frame in the morning, but the rain forced the postponement further tests.
Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro Team) 8th (1:50.203)
“We were pretty strong in our first run this morning. We didn’t improve much from there, but I used the same hard tyre the whole session, and it worked well here on both sides. We made a couple little changes with the bike that felt like they were in a good direction. I did my fastest lap on the step 1 chassis, but the data showed that the step 2 had some pluses. This afternoon was wet one minute and dry the next. It looked like guys were destroying their wet tyres quick, and there was no point in putting on engine mileage and taking risks. We just went out to check a power setting on a practice start. We’ll see what tomorrow brings.”
Valentino Rossi (Ducati Marlboro Team) 13th (1:50.780)
“It’s almost as if we didn’t have practice today. This morning we only had one complete outing, which went pretty well. Then we had problems with both of the bikes, and I was left with the time that I did on my fourth lap. They were really just minor problems, but the fact is that we didn’t ride anymore after the early minutes: on the first bike, a wire touched a hot part and the bike stopped. On the other bike, there was a separate electrical problem, and the result was the same. The afternoon session was halfway between wet and dry, so it was useless. Only in the final minutes were we able to do three laps to check some changes we had made, and the results seemed interesting. We hope we can try them more thoroughly tomorrow to see how competitive we are in normal conditions. Having tested the GP12 here gives us a starting point, but we still have to adapt the 800’s setup, as it requires different lines in order to maintain corner speed. Tomorrow we’ll continue to test, and we hope to get close to the others.”