Yamaha factory Sepang day one test notes

Wednesday, February 11, 2004 Ambient temperature: 33 degrees Track temperature: 54 degrees Humidity: 70% Yamaha MotoGP Teams Test Alongside The Competition in Humid Malaysia Yamaha's MotoGP teams, Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha and Fortuna ...

Wednesday, February 11, 2004
Ambient temperature: 33 degrees
Track temperature: 54 degrees
Humidity: 70%

Yamaha MotoGP Teams Test Alongside The Competition in Humid Malaysia

Yamaha's MotoGP teams, Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha and Fortuna Gauloises Tech 3, were back in action at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia today for their second pre-season test of 2004. The three-day test sees Yamaha's new line-up, which includes five-time World Champion Valentino Rossi, sharing the track with a number of other MotoGP squads. With humidity at the Kuala Lumpur circuit as high as 70% it was hard work for all the riders and lap times were generally lower than the previous round of tests at the venue last month.

The fastest man today was Max Biaggi (Honda) who recorded a 2'02.693. Colin Edwards (Honda) just dipped under the 2'03 mark with Sete Gibernau (Honda) and Rossi recording laps of 2'03.1.

The Yamaha riders had a busy day on their respective YZR-M1 machines. Rossi tested a different engine specification and did some chassis and suspension set-up work while team-mate Checa concentrated on suspension settings and also tried some engine changes. In the Tech 3 squad Marco Melandri worked on the electronic systems and fuel injection of his M1 while Norick Abe spent the day fine-tuning his rear suspension.

Valentino Rossi (Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha) 58 laps, 2'03.1
"It's so hot here! All is quite good but, for sure, we have plenty of work still to do. It has been interesting to get a direct comparison on track with the Hondas and I spent some time out there with Colin Edwards and Max Biaggi. The main points we need to work on are engine characteristics and the front feeling.

"We had an important day today and did many things, mostly on the engine side, and made some good progress. But we are just taking things slowly and not looking at the full limits at this stage. Tomorrow we'll try another engine spec and some different settings and new tyres."

Jerry Burgess, Rossi's Crew Chief (Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha)
"We're going a bit slower today but we were trying two different engine specs and we've had a few teething problems with the settings. We knew this would be the case. We made a lot of progress very quickly in our first test and it's inevitably going to be a little slower now. We're very positive about tyres and suspension and I think we've got enough time to build and improve on other elements before the start of the season."

Carlos Checa (Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha) 53 laps, 2'04.5
"It's been difficult to improve on the lap time I did last time here but I'm not really focused on that. I'm just trying to find a better feeling and reduce the limitations I've got with this current set-up. I've been using the same tyres from Michelin that we had last time but I've got some new ones to test tomorrow. We've made a few small engine changes today as well that I've had to dial-in."

Marco Melandri (Fortuna Gauloises Tech 3) 53 laps, 2'05.6
"Today was quite hard work with the heat and jet lag. Physically my shoulder is getting much better but it still gives me some stabbing pains and it's hard to get right down. We lost a bit of time with settings this morning but were back on track this afternoon and I spent time working with Magneti Marelli on our electronics. We found some real improvement in my last four runs. The handling felt good and the power delivery was good. I'm looking forward to continuing the work tomorrow."

Norick Abe (Fortuna Gauloises Tech 3) 68 laps, 2'06.03
"I haven't had a great day. I just concentrated on rear suspension and I really thought I had found something good at the end of the session so I'm disappointed with my lap time. Hopefully we can sort things out tomorrow."

-fyt-

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Max Biaggi , Carlos Checa , Valentino Rossi , Colin Edwards , Sete Gibernau , Marco Melandri , Abe Norick