Yamaha riders step up their pace in Portimao The hard work of the Yamaha Sterilgarda Team following the opening round last month in Phillip Island was clearly seen in today's first Superbike sessions at the Portimao circuit in Portugal. Both...
Yamaha riders step up their pace in Portimao
The hard work of the Yamaha Sterilgarda Team following the opening round last month in Phillip Island was clearly seen in today's first Superbike sessions at the Portimao circuit in Portugal. Both James Toseland and Cal Crutchlow made the most of the ongoing set up developments to put in highly competitive times, improving on their Phillip Island performances.
The first free practice session of the day gave the riders the opportunity to test out new electronic settings on their R1s. As the session progressed the improvements were clear as Toseland moved steadily up the times, taking the top spot with a 1'44.3 as the clock hit zero. Team mate Crutchlow was just over half a second behind in ninth having tested out some different tyres to Toseland during the session.
The first qualifying session of the weekend saw both riders take turns at the top of the time sheet finding ever more speed as the grip levels increased. Intelligent tyre choices and a more effective electronics package saw both delivering consistently fast, competitive laps with the potential for more improvement in tomorrow's second session and subsequent Superpole. The session drew to a close with Toseland in fifth, less than three tenths off provisional pole and team mate Crutchlow less than one tenth of a second behind in sixth.
James Toseland, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (5th, 1'43.735)
"We've made some really good progress with our testing last week in Misano, we've gone in the direction we wanted to with the engine and electronics. We had a lot to try today, and we've gone in a really positive direction for the race set up with tyre life and things like that. We've got a little bit more to do but I'm really pleased with the work Frankie and the team have done since Australia to here so a massive thank you to the team and hopefully we can keep it going in the top five now."
Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team (6th, 1'43.769)
"I'm a lot happier today. We have definitely made improvements from Australia and we've also come back to a track with lots of grip. As the grip levels of the track improved over the sessions so have we. We still need to work on our bike to improve on really slippery track conditions and optimize our settings and performance. Tyre life is looking better, and there was no chatter here so that's that problem cured. We intend to keep working on our electronics and progress even further tomorrow."
Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha Sterilgarda World Superbike Team Manager
"It seems that the work we've done since Australia is working well. To see where both riders are is very encouraging. This gives us real satisfaction. I think we've worked very well with our tyre choice and we're pretty happy with how they are working. Tomorrow we'll work again on the set up to see which will tyres we'll choose for the distance. For today we are satisfied."