MICHELIN MAN ROSSI WINS TO LEAD THE WORLD Michelin riders ruled the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez today, monopolising the podium. Valentino Rossi (Fiat Yamaha Team YZR-M1-Michelin) won the race to take the World Championship lead after seeing off...
MICHELIN MAN ROSSI WINS TO LEAD THE WORLD
Michelin riders ruled the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez today, monopolising the podium. Valentino Rossi (Fiat Yamaha Team YZR-M1-Michelin) won the race to take the World Championship lead after seeing off a strong challenge from pole-sitter Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team RC212V-Michelin) in front of around 132,000 fans. And Rossi's team-mate Colin Edwards (Fiat Yamaha Team YZR-M1-Michelin) chased Pedrosa hard all the way to finish a close third. Rossi's victory was also the first success for Michelin's new 16in front slick, now used by all of Michelin's seven MotoGP riders.
"This victory and these 25 points are important," said Rossi, who has won five premier-class world titles with Michelin. "We worked very well with Michelin here and the tyres worked well all the way to the end of the race. It was a fast race and a great battle with Dani. I pushed hard from the beginning and built a small advantage lap by lap."
Carlos Checa (Honda LCR RC212V-Michelin) also showed strongly all weekend, qualifying on the front row and beating World Champion Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda Team RC212V-Michelin) to sixth place.
"We are happy, the race was quite good for us," said Jean-Philippe Weber after his first victory as Michelin's director of motorcycle racing. "We made our tyres for this race according to the results from last month's tests here and also according to the weather forecast. All our guys used tyres in the medium range, tailored to their needs, and everyone seemed pretty happy with the tyres' performance. There was just a small difference between the tyres used by Yamahas and those used by Dani. As usual, Dani's were slightly softer, but it was only a small step.
"This is our first win for our 16 inch front which also makes us happy. With this tyre our riders were able to go fast right from the beginning of the race. We started testing this generation of the 16 at this track at the end of last year and we did back-to-back comparisons with the 16.5. Our riders immediately preferred the 16 because it allows them to flick faster into the turns and gives them more grip and feel as they attack the turns.
"This wasn't an easy weekend for anyone because of the difference in temperature from the morning sessions to the afternoon. The difference was sometimes as much as 17 degrees, which makes it hard to work on race set-up and race tyres during the morning. But our team did a great job, learning to work with the new tyre regulations."