Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after the first day of practice at Silverstone:
Superb Start for Lorenzo at Silverstone
Silverstone (Great Britain), 30th August 2013
Defending world champion Jorge Lorenzo made a strong start to this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone in today’s two free practice sessions. The Mallorcan wrapped up day one as the fastest rider overall, 0.224 seconds clear of closest rival Marc Marquez. His fastest time of 2’02.734 seconds takes him underneath the fastest race lap of last year’s Grand Prix, set by himself. Lorenzo led the entire second session and completed the morning practice in second, 0.219 seconds behind Marquez.
Valentino Rossi made big steps forward over the course of today. The Italian nine-time world champion was 0.866 seconds off the fastest lap in the morning session in sixth place with a 2’04.682 lap. Some hard work over the day saw him improve by over a second to complete the afternoon practice in fifth with a 2’03.480 second lap.
1st / 2'02.734 / 18 laps
“I started very fast because I improved almost one second and a half in the beginning; I was surprised with the improvement. At this track, when the rear tyre starts to drop it’s very difficult to keep the same pace so we have to work hard to make a constant bike that works over long distance. I’m satisfied because I think we have the possibility to fight for the victory this time.”
5th / 2'03.480 / 18 laps
“I enjoyed today a lot, this track is great. If you are able to ride at the limit and have a good feeling with the bike, it’s very funny because it’s very fast, the track is so wide you go a lot of time at full throttle. I’m quite happy with the first day, especially because in the last two years I suffered a lot here in Silverstone. We made a good step, but we still have to work to find the right setting to have a good balance form the beginning to the end of the race. I’m not so bad in braking and entry but I have some problems in other areas so we have to work. We modified the setting from Brno because in the last two races I wasn't strong enough.”
“A very good first day. First of all because the weather is very stable and it's a nice temperature compared with last year which helps the lap times. The pace is already there so it looks like we have to make some small adjustments but the bike feels good and we are looking forward to qualifying tomorrow.”
“After a few Grand Prix we start this weekend in a really different way. We have been really fast since the beginning and the most important thing is the pace is really good. Both riders are quite satisfied with their set up, we know that we have to improve and we know which area to do it in. We also tested both tyre choices so we have completed a lot of work. We are pretty focused and we are very optimistic about the race.”
Solid start for Repsol Honda team at sunny Silverstone
After a slightly cloudy start to the British GP, Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez found himself at the top of the time sheets in FP1 with a time of 2'03.816 with teammate Dani Pedrosa in 4th on 2'04.431.
In the afternoon's FP2 session, the weather slowly improved and the times dropped by over a second as the air temperature rose from 17ºC to 21ºC and the track temperature from 23ºC to 34ºC. Marc recorded a fastest lap of 2'02.958 on lap 13 of 17, placing him 2nd fastest for the day and Dani, who made use of the variable conditions to test both the hard and rear Bridgestone tyre, was just behind him in 3rd with a time of 2'03.192 taken on lap 9 of 16.
Marc Marquez 2nd 2'02.958
"I'm happy, because right from the start I felt pretty good. I was feeling a little uneasy about this circuit when I arrived, because last year I struggled a bit here and didn't know what was in store for me on the MotoGP bike. I tried to stay calm and take it slowly and, in the end, I felt very comfortable on the bike. Jorge might be a little stronger than us so far, but we are closer to his times than we had expected. Tomorrow we will continue working in the same way to further improve the setup"
Dani Pedrosa 3rd 2'03.192
"Today the weather was good and we were able to test the tyre range out in the early laps. Normally here at Silverstone it's quite cold and we don't get a chance to try the hard compound, but today we were able to do that. There wasn't much in the way of a positive feel with that compound, because we lacked rear grip, but nevertheless we got some fairly good times with it. The goal for tomorrow is to improve grip and clock some faster laps"
Crutchlow and Smith satisfied with encouraging start on home soil
The biggest race of the 2013 MotoGP World Championship for Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team riders Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith got off to an encouraging start at the historic Silverstone track this afternoon.
Crutchlow demonstrated his determination to be the first British rider since 2000 to finish on the podium in the British Grand Prix when he made a flying start this morning to end FP1 in third position behind current series leader Marc Marquez and reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo.
Lap times tumbled in hotter conditions this afternoon and while home crowd hero Crutchlow was able to knock over 1.5s off his best pace, he slipped down the leaderboard into sixth, though he was less than 0.1s behind Alvaro Bautista in fourth.
Roared on by a large home crowd soaking up glorious late summer sunshine, Crutchlow was hoping to be higher up the rankings and closer to the fastest pace but he is optimistic that he is yet to unleash the full potential of his YZR-M1 machine having experimented with a range of settings in both 45-minute sessions.
Smith’s first experience of the long and technical Silverstone layout on a MotoGP machine saw him focus on the set-up of his YZR-M1 machine to cope with super fast sections and rapid changes of direction that make the British venue one of the toughest but most spectacular challenges on the schedule.
The 22-year-old was ninth fastest this morning and less than 0.3s outside of the top six and like Crutchlow he was able to make big progress in FP2.
He improved from a 2.05.108 to a 2.03.750 and that major improvement promoted him into eighth on combined times and reduced the gap to the best pace to just over one second after he was able to successfully evaluate soft and hard tyre options for both the front and rear today.
In both sessions Smith set his best lap on his last lap, the rookie impressively building up his speed throughout to boost his confidence that he can battle for a top six in Sunday’s 20-lap race.
Cal Crutchlow 6th 2.03.505 – 33 laps :
“Firstly it was fantastic to see such a big crowd here at Silverstone today. The support from the British fans always gives you a boost and it was a special feeling to see so many here on the first day. It hasn’t been an easy start to my home race but I am sure we can make some big improvements. This morning wasn’t too bad and I was satisfied to be in the top three but it was a bit more a struggle in FP2. We were trying the bike with different settings and at the moment I’ve not made a decision on which is the direction to go. I need to improve in two sectors to be faster and more competitive and one area we need to work on is front-end grip because I had too much wheelie. We will have a good look at the data tonight to make sure I’m stronger tomorrow.”
Bradley Smith 8th 2.03.750 – 34 laps :
“It was great to ride in front of my home crowd today and the amount of people here was amazing. The British fans have always given me great support and today was no exception. It was a positive day because I found a good setting this morning and then it was a case of tweaking it to suit this track. For the first time all season I have tried all the tyre options for the front and rear in one day, so we have evaluated a lot and got a clear way to follow for the rest of the weekend. This track is certainly designed for MotoGP. It is so fast and open that you really get to explore the bike’s full potential. I will enjoy riding the YZR-M1 this weekend and as I get faster I am sure it will be even more fun.”
Dovizioso, Hayden seventh and tenth in Silverstone free practice
Day one of the British Grand Prix took place in warm temperatures and under sunny skies at the Silverstone Circuit, and the MotoGP riders enjoyed the ideal conditions as they tackled the long, fast circuit during today’s two free-practice sessions.
It was Andrea Dovizioso’s first time on the track aboard the Ducati Desmosedici GP13, and the Italian was relatively pleased to post the seventh-best time of the day. His Ducati Team companion Nicky Hayden was tenth best, but the American feels that his potential may be better than the lap time indicates.
Andrea Dovizioso - Ducati Team, 7th (2:03.658)
“Riding this track is really nice—very difficult to find the right rhythm, but quite thrilling nonetheless. Doing good times is a challenge for us, as we have to be quite physical, which really isn’t the best way to ride in the race. Still, we were able to improve since this morning and I’m happy with the time we did. I managed to find a decent feeling during the session and to do a good time at the end. It’s certainly not fast enough for the race but we started well today.”
Nicky Hayden - Ducati Team, 10th (2:04.089)
“The conditions are very different from what we’ve had here in the past, and the track seems a lot faster. Silverstone is a really good track and I enjoyed it today. I also think we might be better off than we have been at the last few races, as the bike is working pretty well in some spots, even if the lap time doesn’t necessarily show that completely. The biggest thing holding me back at the moment is that it’s very harsh over the bumps, so we’ve still got to sort some stuff out.”
BRADL 9TH FASTEST AT BRITISH GP OPENING DAY
Silverstone, 30 August: the premier class runners enjoyed blue skies and completely dry track in today’s first outing at Silverstone circuit which hosts the twelfth round of the calendar. Despite the good weather, LCR racer Stefan Bradl’s performance on the British soil was not brilliant with the 23-year-old occupying the 9th position (2’03.784).
“Actually our performance does not look so good on the paper but it’s not that bad. Today we worked a lot on the bike to find some more rear grip and we found a small improvement in the afternoon session gaining some more traction control out of the corners. But, on the other side, we lose a bit in the entry of the curves because I struggle to get the bikes stopped in the right place. It’s not the best way to start the weekend but we are working hard with the data and we will try to be faster tomorrow”.
ANOTHER GOOD DAY FOR BAUTISTA
Continuing a purple patch of form for Alvaro Bautista, the Spaniard was eighth quickest today at Silverstone in practice and hopes to build on this over the weekend. The Team GO & FUN Honda Gresini rider had been hoping for a better final position on the timesheets, but has been working with his team, Showa and Nissin to resolve a rear grip issue and expects to be quicker on Saturday. Bryan Staring suffered a crash today, with heavy bruising to his right hand and arm.
Alvaro Bautista (4th 2’ 03” 463) “We did a very good job today and I am fairly satisfied. This morning we started well, despite some rear grip issues, and in the afternoon we tried two solutions in order to perform better. However, we didn’t find anything to give significant improvement. Now we have the data to look over, and we believe that we could have found the right solution in order to exit the corners more quickly –avoiding the bike sliding or stopping due to the traction control kicking in. We are convinced that tomorrow we can realise all the potential that this bike has.”
Bryan Staring (22th 2’ 07” 854) “Unfortunately we had a crash that was very unwanted. I struggled to find a feel for the track, and this was demonstrated with the bike throwing me off and me hitting the ground hard. It could have been worse, however, and luckily I only have bruising to my arm.”
Fausto Gresini “Alvaro’s positive momentum continues. Last year he took pole position here and finished fourth in the race. Today he went well and proved that we are going well, that he is more competitive and that the bike’s performance is better. I am very happy with the work carried out by the team, Showa and Nissin. The progression made over the past four races is obvious. I’m disappointed for Bryan, because his crash soured his day and will definitely not be helpful from now until the end of the season. Unfortunately we haven’t been able to make him progress in MotoGP as we would have liked, which makes you feel bad.”
MotoGP round 12 kicks off in Great Britain
Bright sunshine welcomed the first day of free practice to the Silverstone circuit, which is hosting the third and final round of a summer tripleheader.
Just a few days after the last GP, held in the Czech Republic, Andrea Iannone used today’s pair of sessions for “reconnaissance,” as he is determined to continue the good work done with the DesmosediciGP13 during this busy period.
His best time of the day was a 2’02.052”, posted on the thirteenth lap of FP2, putting the Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team rider in thirteenth position in the combined times. Work now continues in the garage in preparation for tomorrow’s final free practice session and qualifying.
Andrea Iannone – Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
“Unfortunately, not being able to rest doesn’t help, but I'm pleased because I'm better than in Brno. My shoulder didn’t hurt too much, and I haven’t taken any medicine today. We’ll keep evaluating the situation over the next two days, and maybe I'll take some painkillers on Sunday, but if so, only in very low doses. As for the bike, we're not going too badly. This track is very long and wide, and knowing how to interpret the lines is essential in order to better be fast. It's so easy to lose a second, so being a little more than a second behind the other Ducati riders doesn’t demoralized me too much. Now I have to figure out how much is the bike and where have I to improve my riding, as it’s possible that I still have to learn the ideal lines for this track. I was slower this morning than in the afternoon, when I improved by about one second without making too many changes to the bike. I’m okay for tomorrow. We’ll look at the data, and I hope that the few things we plan on changing will help me.”
MotoGP round 12 kicks off in Great Britain
Bright sunshine welcomed the first day of free practice to the Silverstone circuit, which is hosting the third and final round of a summer tripleheader.
Just a few days after the last GP, held in the Czech Republic, Michele Pirro, substitute-rider for Ben Spies, used today’s pair of sessions for “reconnaissance,” as he is determined to find the feeling with the Texan’s bike.
His best time of the day was a 2’05.438”, posted on the fourteenth lap of FP2, putting the Ignite Pramac Racing Team rider in sixteenth position in the combined times. Work now continues in the garage in preparation for tomorrow’s final free practice session and qualifying.
Michele Pirro - Ignite Pramac Racing Team
“I'm still struggling with the feeling with the front, and I can’t brake as I’d like. I used a new tyre on the second bike, and the lap time improved just a little, so I'm sure we can do more for tomorrow. Unfortunately I can’t feel the bike in changes of direction, and I’m not confident on corner entry. The front doesn’t seem to be planted on the ground and I don’t feel like I can brake as I’d like, as I don’t have the grip that I need. Looking at the data, it’s strange to see that at Misano, I brake where the others do, whereas here I start about 50 meters earlier. I’m not fast because I don’t want to take risks, but of course I lose time. It will be another tough race but, as always, I’ll do everything possible in order to get satisfactory results.”
Edwards and Corti take it step by step at Silverstone
The Hertz British Grand Prix welcomes NGM Mobile Forward Racing riders Colin Edwards and Claudio Corti at the Silverstone circuit.
The American started off Friday at Silverstone positively, keeping the momentum from the last two races. Edwards feels good on the bike but knows that him and his team need to work on the final touches before they are ready for tomorrow’s qualifying.
The Italian riders on the other hand did feel the “side effects” from the Brno crash and admits to have struggled a bit during the first few laps of the morning session. Corti remains confident and believes his FTR – Kawasaki bike will be ready to be competitive here at Silverstone after going over today’s data and making the modifications that his team has already in mind.
“Obviously coming off our last couple of weekends I was excited to be in Silverstone, I got a lot of fans in England. Everything started out okay this morning; everything seemed to work pretty good. We played around with the front fork springs because we were on a softer front tire than what we would normally use with this weather conditions. This afternoon we went out on the hard front and had to go back to our first configurations because of the matching frequencies. It was not as easy as I wanted it to be today, I would have liked to be a little bit quicker, I think the hard tire some of the guys used might be better. We have some ideas to improve the bike for tomorrow. We will be trying the hard tire tomorrow morning and we will go from there. I am quite happy with it.”
“Today it was my first time on the bike after the Brno crash and I can’t deny that this morning I struggled a little bit. My initial struggle due to the crash and the setup choices that we made for the morning session made me go slower than I expected. The afternoon session was much better, we have made an important step from the morning session improving considerably my lap times. I do struggle because I get tired but the Clinica mobile guys who have been taking really good care of me these past few days. I would like to say thank you to them, without them it would have been even harder for me today. We will focus on finishing to setup both the bike and myself for tomorrow to be more competitive. We are not far from the fast CRTs.”
“This morning we started off the first FP really well with Colin, we improved his lap times compared to the ones he had from last year. Claudio on the other had and some difficulties. In the afternoon Claudio made a step forward, improving his lap times by 1.5 seconds, Colin also improved his lap times by almost 1 second. We are still far from the fastest CRT; we have a bit of a problem in the change of direction. We have to try to find the best possible solution in order to be ready for tomorrow’s qualifying and provide our riders to be in the best possible conditions to be able to fight for best CRT.”
SATISFACTORY START FOR POWER ELECTRONICS ASPAR RIDERS AT SILVERSTONE
Aleix Espargaró finishes free practice 11th and just 1.4s from P1, whilst Randy De Puniet ends the day 14th
MotoGP riders are like superheroes. They crash, they fall, they get back up again. They do battle in all conditions and they keep fighting even when their bodies are bashed and bruised. Fatigue is nevera n excuse and the riders were giving it all for a third weekend in succession today at Silverstone. Marquez was quicker in the morning and Lorenzo went fastest in the afternoon, sending a message to his rival that the title fight will not be easy. Once again the 3 form riders – Márquez, Pedrosa and Lorenzo – are a step ahead of the rest. The best time of the day was a new circuit record of 2.02.888, not quite as fast as the 2.02.020 pole record. But that record could well fall tomorrow too.
Last Sunday was a productive day at Brno for the POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar team and today they were back on track experiencing further success. Aleix Espargaró continues to write new rules. At a long track which might not have been favourable against the prototypes he was soon up as high as seventh early in the morning session and then ninth. Overall he concluded the day 11th, just 1.4s off Lorenzo. Frenchman Randy De Puniet, meanwhile, was 14th and 2.3s down on P1. The POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar pair were satisfied with their times but there is still room for improvement on bike set up.
11th Aleix Espargaró 2.04.145 (27 laps): “I’m happy with how it’s gone on this first day. I was actually surprised by our performance as I thought we could be further behind at such a long track. The pace was good and we’re only 1.4s off P1. I’m satisfied that we did a good job. I know the soft tyre is good at two laps and I had expected to drop the time a bit more with it, but it didn’t work out, but I’m still happy with today. The base setting is good and we can keep working in the same direction.”
14th Randy De Puniet 2.05.069 (33 laps): “In the afternoon run I decided to go out on a hard rear tyre and it worked well as we dropped the time by a second compared with FP1. After a few laps though the grip decreased so I came in to chat with the team. We tweaked the front fork but it didn’t bring an improvement. The front was gripping too much and we had a chattering issue. So we stopped and looked at the options and went for our standard setting, the set-up we had found at Brno on Sunday. Although the changes weren’t that useful in the afternoon I’m still happy because this morning the bike was running perfectly.”
Lorenzo shines in Friday practice at Silverstone
Round 12: British MotoGP™ - Free Practice One & Two
Silverstone, Friday 30 August 2013
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft & Medium. Rear: Soft, Medium-soft & Medium (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: FP1 - Dry. Ambient 19-20°C; Track 25-28°C (Bridgestone measurement)
FP2 - Dry. Ambient 22-23°C; Track 35-36°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo was the quickest rider in today’s practice sessions at Silverstone as the reigning MotoGP™ champion sets out to score a second consecutive victory at the British Grand Prix.
Lorenzo’s set his benchmark lap time of 2'02.734 on this third lap in Free Practice 2 to head the Repsol Honda duo of Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa who were second and third quickest today, setting times of 2'02.958 and 2'03.192 respectively. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was the quickest CRT rider on the first day of action at Silverstone, his best lap time of 2'04.145 placing him in eleventh place on the timesheets.
Conditions this morning for FP1 were changeable, with alternating sunny and cloudy conditions resulting in the riders mainly using the softer slick options while getting to terms with the grip level of the circuit. The sunshine in the afternoon was more persistent, resulting in warmer track temperatures up to a top of 36°C in FP2. The warmer afternoon temperatures brought with it greater variation in tyre choice with all specification of slick tyre being used in FP2. Most riders were able to set their personal best lap times using the softer rear slick in conjunction with the harder front slick, though the more consistent performance and durability of the harder rear slick resulted in approximately half the riders evaluating this option in FP2.
Weather conditions for tomorrow are predicted to be dry, yet slightly cooler than today with the next MotoGP™ session being FP3 at 955 local time (GMT +1).
Masao Azuma – Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“Today was a positive day with dry weather in all the sessions, although the presence of cloud in the morning meant that riders preferred the softer slicks in FP1 in order to evaluate the grip level of the circuit. With the race being held later in the year, we decided for this year at Silverstone that we would change our front tyre allocation, offering front slick options one step harder than last year, changing to the soft and medium compounds. This change has worked very well as the harder front slick was a good option when track temperatures were warmer, while the softer option gave good warm-up performance in the morning. All rear slick options were tested today and we got positive feedback on them all and if we have dry weather tomorrow and for the race. It is possible that we will see a real mix of tyre combinations being used. Lap times for this stage of the weekend are quite quick and I anticipate that the existing pole position record could be broken if we have fine weather tomorrow.”