Lorenzo under his lap record at Estoril, this time on Bridgestone tyres Fiat Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo made a dominant start to the weekend on his return to the scene of his first MotoGP victory. The number 99 rider topped the timesheets at...
Lorenzo under his lap record at Estoril, this time on Bridgestone tyres
Fiat Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo made a dominant start to the weekend on his return to the scene of his first MotoGP victory. The number 99 rider topped the timesheets at the end of the first free practice session, this time using Bridgestone tyres for the first time at this circuit. His best lap came on the harder of the available front and rear slicks.
The first free practice session for the Portuguese Grand Prix showed encouraging performance from Bridgestone's slicks as Lorenzo lapped just over 0.2seconds faster than the existing lap record, set by himself last season.
Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa finished the session second fastest also on the harder option front and rear Bridgestone slicks, followed by Valentino Rossi and Casey Stoner, the Australian returning after a three-race absence. The harder of the available tyre options, the medium compound front and the hard compound rear, were clearly the faster choice today given the conditions.
Most riders tested both available compounds of front and rear slick tyre during the hour-long session in preparation for the region's notoriously unpredictable weather and fluctuating temperatures over the next two days.
Estoril is a track that demands a lot from the tyres, but all the available compounds worked well during the session and the wider operating range of this year's Bridgestone tyres was advantageous in giving the riders a consistent feeling throughout the varied nature of each lap.
Tohru Ubukata - Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department
"The performance we have seen today is very encouraging and I am happy that Jorge has gone faster already than the existing lap record he set last year. This shows the advances we have made in tyre performance at this circuit, which I think come primarily from the wider operating range we have designed into our tyres for this single supply era. This wider operating range lends itself well to the varied nature of this circuit, which is what makes it so tough, and gives the riders a more consistent feeling from the slow and twisty corners such as the chicane through to the fast and open final corner. It is also good to see Casey back and fighting at the front where we are used to seeing him. If the conditions allow, I am confident from today's performance that another lap record will be claimed on Bridgestone tyres on Sunday."