Perfect start for Lorenzo while Rossi follows in second Fiat Yamaha Team rider Jorge Lorenzo began his first ever MotoGP race on home soil in perfect fashion today, finishing the first day of practice in Jerez in first position at the front of...
Perfect start for Lorenzo while Rossi follows in second
Fiat Yamaha Team rider Jorge Lorenzo began his first ever MotoGP race on home soil in perfect fashion today, finishing the first day of practice in Jerez in first position at the front of an all-Yamaha top three. The young rookie, who lies second in the championship after an impressive debut in Qatar, was under lap record pace in the afternoon session and looks on-course to give his passionate home fans an exciting weekend.
Lorenzo was fifth fastest in the morning session but gradual work on his set-up, starting from a good base following the February test here, led to an improved pace in the warmer afternoon session and a best time of 1.40.321. It was a good day for Yamaha as Lorenzo's team-mate Valentino Rossi was just 0.043 seconds behind him, with Yamaha Tech 3 rider Colin Edwards in third.
Jorge Lorenzo - 1st - 1.40.321
"The first day has gone very well and I'm really happy to have had a day like this here at Jerez. My bike feels great and it's a huge emotion for me to be here riding 'at home' in front of all the Spanish fans. I feel like all of Spain is watching us this weekend and I hope that we're going to be able to give them a great show here over the weekend. We have a good base setting after the test here and the first race and, although of course we have more work to do, I think that we're on the right track. My team is working well, the bike and the Michelin tyres also are very good and I feel that there is great energy, excitement and motivation in our garage. After today I think we're in good shape for the weekend and my hope is that we will be able to fight at the front. The weather today was fantastic and I really hope this continues, for the fans and for us!
Danielle Romagnoli - Team Manager
It's been a very important and perfect first day in Spain for us. Jorge has done many laps at a very good pace throughout and we're very happy with our performance on this first day. We're still not at our full potential but we've got a good base setting from the test and so we will keep working like this and keep improving. The set-up is okay but we need to concentrate a little bit on the front feeling, so this will be one of the main targets tomorrow. Anyway, a great first day and let's hope we can continue with more of the same tomorrow."
MotoGP's return to Europe began in promising fashion for the Fiat Yamaha Team and Valentino Rossi today, as the Italian finished the day second fastest with Yamaha riders filling the first three spots on the time sheets.
Rossi, who won this race for Yamaha in 2005 and 2007, got straight down to business this morning, working on a variety of improvements to bike and tyres following his tricky season-opening race in Qatar and finishing the first session third. It was immediately clear that things were improving for him and this afternoon he continued in the same vein, lapping consistently fast and finishing the day with a best time of 1'40.364.
Valentino Rossi - 2nd 1.40.364
"After Qatar, to be third this morning and second this afternoon on just the first day makes me quite happy! I feel comfortable on the bike and tyres, although we need to work a little bit harder to find the perfect race rhythm for Sunday. I had fun on the bike today and I am quite fast so I think we have a good base to build on. To have three Yamaha's at the top again is great and once again shows how good our bike is. With the Bridgestones it feels quite good and I think we're improving the package all the time but we can't afford to stop working so tomorrow we will do the maximum once again. It's great to be riding here in the sunshine and I think it's going to be a great show this weekend for everyone!"
Davide Brivio - Team Manager
"Today the team did a very good job. After the Qatar race our engineers have made a deep analysis of the issues we had there and they and have come here with some different ideas to try and they seem to be working well. It looks like we've found the right way to combine our bike and the tyres together and so we have a good base on which to build for the rest of the weekend. Now we have to concentrate on making the best tyre choice for the race, we already have a good pace but it's going to be very competitive on Sunday so we need to be in the best possible shape!"