Rossi And Hayden Happy With Progress In Portugal Test
A long, intense day of testing following the Portuguese Grand Prix allowed Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden to try various updates that were prepared by Ducati’s racing department.
The two Ducati Marlboro Team riders concentrated mainly on finding a setup with updates that were made to the frame, which both of them pronounced promising when the test was concluded.
After several runs spent finding a base setup, Valentino Rossi consistently lapped in the 1:37 range. Nicky Hayden also liked the new chassis, and by the end of the day, he had dropped his time under 1:38.
Valentino Rossi (Ducati Marlboro Team), 5th, 1:37.382 (82 laps)
“It was a positive test because the new updates were immediately better. The bike was more sensitive to changes made to the front, which makes it easier to work on a setup that works better for me. I realized that as soon as I got on the bike and then, over the course of the following hours, we constantly progressed. We also had an engine with a slightly smoother power delivery that I liked a lot. We’ll start using it when the rotation plan allows it. I liked the tyres that Bridgestone had us try, they seemed very good. Of course the other riders also made great progress, and the less positive about today is the gap to the front on my best lap. Anyway, everything that the Ducati technicians brought worked, and that means that we’re on the right path. We have to continue working, but today’s test gives us confidence.”
Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro Team), 9th, 1:37.463 (89 laps)
“We were lucky to get a really good day with the weather. We improved, because I consistently went a lot faster than in qualifying, but it looked like everybody else improved too. I did my best time on the 2012 tyres, so Bridgestone made a nice step there. I got on the updated chassis after lunch, and it had a better feel over some of the bumps, and still good stability under braking. The updated engine made the bike a little smoother, and I liked it overall.”