Colin Edwards and Ben Spies made an encouraging start to the Misano MotoGP weekend today, the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team pairing able to secure top six places in the opening free practice session. Edwards spent the entire session evaluating the...
Colin Edwards and Ben Spies made an encouraging start to the Misano MotoGP weekend today, the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team pairing able to secure top six places in the opening free practice session.
Edwards spent the entire session evaluating the endurance potential of Bridgestone's soft compound rear tyre option in warm but breezy conditions.
The experienced American was delighted with the consistent performance of the softer option, Edwards posting his best time of 1.35.834 on his 26th lap as he ran a full race distance of 28-laps on the same set of soft tyres.
Edwards finished top non-factory rider today and is now confident he can sustain his early form to fight for a first top six finish of the campaign in Sunday's race.
Fresh from the best weekend of his MotoGP career in Indianapolis, Spies was in impressive form again this afternoon.
Spies arrived in Italy brimming with confidence after he claimed a stunning career first pole position in Indianapolis, which he followed with a best ever second place behind Dani Pedrosa in the race. And he maintained the momentum gained on home soil with another classy performance today, the 26-year-old finishing in sixth position just 0.058s behind Edwards.
Spies is confident that overnight changes to improve rear stability and front-end feeling with his YZR-M1 machine will help him challenge for a third successive front row start in tomorrow's qualifying session.
Colin Edwards 5th 1.35.834 -- 28 laps
"That was a good start to the weekend and I'm really happy with the bike. We had a bit too much weight on the front at the start of the session and a little adjustment to get more weight on the rear really helped my confidence. I kept the same rear tyre for the whole session and it felt really good. It was the softer option but it already looks like that's going to be the race tyre. It performed really well over a long distance and my fastest lap was on lap 26, so we've got no worries about it being good for the whole race. And I didn't really have any spinning issues and I told my guys it felt like the best grip I've had all year, so a big thanks to Bridgestone. I think we can only make the bike better and I feel like my first top six of the season is definitely attainable on Sunday."
Ben Spies 6th 1.35.892 -- 30 laps
"I'm happy with today and it's another decent start. Like Colin, I stayed on the soft tyre for the whole session and while I'm happy with the lap times, I know we can find some more time. We can make the rear better because I was just missing a bit of grip and stability that would allow me to go that little bit faster. And we can definitely make the front-end better. It wasn't a big problem but I wasn't as comfortable as I can be in the session. We've had a look at that already and know what we've got to try to make that better for tomorrow. So with a couple of minor issues I'm happy it was a solid session. There's definitely not one second we can find in the bike but there's definitely a few tenths we can find with some different settings we'll try tomorrow."
-source: tech 3