Press releases from the MotoGP teams after the first day of practice at Misano:
Strong Start in Misano for Local Hero Rossi
Misano Adriatico (Italy), 13th September 2013
Valentino Rossi made a strong start to the San Marino and the Riviera of Rimini Grand Prix weekend today, taking third overall in combined times for the first two free practice sessions.
The local hero was enjoying Yamaha’s new seamless gearbox for the first time in a race weekend situation as he tackled the Misano World circuit under hot and sunny conditions. Rossi completed the morning session in fourth, just over half a second from the front then stepped up the pace in the afternoon session, shaving just under quarter of a second off to finish in third, 0.258 seconds behind Marc Marquez at the front.
Jorge Lorenzo was quick to find a similar pace to teammate Rossi, wrapping up day one in fourth position. The defending world champion was also using the new seamless gearbox as he worked to find an optimum set up for the track. The morning session saw him finish in third, 0.426 seconds from the front and then improve in time in the afternoon to finish 0.295 seconds from Marquez in fourth position.
3rd / 1'34.458 / 23 laps
“It’s always special and a great feeling to ride here. Today was a good Friday for me, my performance was not so bad. This morning I was already quite fast but especially this afternoon my pace was very good. I was fast from the beginning to the end of the practice and we are very close to the front. Yamaha has made a fantastic job with the gearbox; it is a great help for the riders. It’s not a big advantage with lap time but the bike becomes a lot easier to ride, more stable in acceleration and less wheelie. You can concentrate more on riding, it is less demanding so I think for the race it will be a big help.”
4th / 1'34.495 / 19 laps
“We are having some problems to find the best set up on the bike because I felt a little bit worse than the last years here but we are trying to improve it. The new gearbox is working well and I really like it. I’m confident we can go a little faster tomorrow.”
Wilco Zeelenberg Team Manager
“The first day in Misano is done. We need to fix some things on the bike to find a little more confidence on entry and also rear grip is a bit of an issue. We are not far off but we need to improve on some areas. We need to find a couple of tenths of a second but I think we can definitely do that.”
Massimo Meregalli Team Director
“We have started very well considering we started using the new transmission today. The feeling of the riders has been great, as good as it was in Brno. They are both really impressed with it and I think the feeling will only get better as they get used to it. This morning we suffered from a lack of grip but we recovered well this afternoon. We are heading in the right direction, we are close and tomorrow we will make another step.”
Marquez and Pedrosa back on top in Misano
Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa were back on top today at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli in San Marino.
The Spanish duo got to work straight away, looking for the best set up for their RC213V. Track conditions improved slightly from the morning to the afternoon but the surface still remained quite slippery. Championship leader Marc was fastest for the day with a time of 1'34.200 on lap 9 of 22. Teammate Dani, second in the Championship, suffered from some front brake vibration in both sessions, but was able to clock a time just 0.033s off Marc with 1'34.233 on lap 19 of 20.
Marc Marquez 1st 1'34.200
“I am happy with how things went today, and how we worked. I felt pretty good from the start and found some good reference points; there's only a few places, like on the fast corner, where I still need to make some improvements in order to go faster. I'm running slightly wide onto the astroturf at that point. I hope that we can rectify this tomorrow, keep working well and get in even better shape for the race"
Dani Pedrosa 2nd 1'34.233
“In general, today we managed to have two good practice sessions. The only problem is that we are lacking some grip in the rear. It was hard to find the necessary traction during the sessions and we hope to be able to improve this tomorrow. The track condition didn't help us today either, as the asphalt wasn't very grippy. Despite all this, tomorrow we will be looking for a good qualifying session - which is the important thing"
Dovizioso eighth, Hayden twelfth in Misano Free Practice
The GP di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini kicked off in perfect conditions, with sunny skies and mild temperatures, but at the completion of day one, the Ducati Team wasn’t satisfied with its early efforts at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.
The first free-practice session ended with Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso seventh and eighth quickest, respectively. The afternoon session saw Dovizioso improve his best time by .112 seconds to 1:35.392, which left him in the same position, whereas the American wasn’t able to improve his morning time and dropped to twelfth.
Both riders will work with their teams during tomorrow morning’s free-practice in an effort to improve their setups for the afternoon qualifying sessions.
Andrea Dovizioso - Ducati Team, 8th (1:34.901)
“We’re all quite close but the feeling is a bit worse than when we had our test here. It’s a few degrees cooler and my Desmosedici works a little differently. This track is pretty tight and slow, and we must work to improve by a couple tenths in order to get our pace below 1’35”. That will be very important in order to have a chance to fight for positions further up in the field.”
Nicky Hayden - Ducati Team, 12th (1:35.392)
“I obviously wasn’t thrilled with the day, but I do think we can improve quite a bit for tomorrow. There are a couple of sections where I’m losing the most, mainly on change of direction, but I’m going quite well in other places. It was a bit bumpy, but that’s nothing we didn’t expect for Misano. I wasn’t happy with my last exit of the afternoon as I made some mistakes. My ideal time is half a second faster, so I’m confident we can do a good step forward tomorrow.”
Crutchlow and Smith target improvements after difficult start in Misano
Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team riders Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith experienced a difficult start to preparations for Sunday’s Misano MotoGP round today.
In warm and sunny conditions at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, the British pairing found both 45-minute free practice sessions a tough challenge while they worked hard to find confidence with their YZR-M1 machinery.
A right arm injury the 27-year-old suffered in the first of three heavy crashes during his recent home race at Silverstone has still not completely healed and Crutchlow was uncharacteristically outside of the top 10 in FP1 this morning.
Crutchlow was able to make significant progress this afternoon by lapping over 0.7s faster and a personal best time of 1.35.208 moved him one place higher up the rankings into 10th position and just 0.4s away from the top six.
Rookie Smith’s first taste of the San Marino track on a MotoGP machine didn’t go according to plan after the 22-year-old ended the opening day proceedings in 14th position on the combined timesheets.
Building up his confidence and speed in FP2, Smith had just set his best time of the day with a 1.36.004 when he fell unhurt at the first corner at the beginning of his 11th lap.
Despite a difficult start to the 13th round of the 2013 MotoGP World Championship, Crutchlow and Smith remain optimistic they can be more competitive for the remainder of the weekend
Cal Crutchlow 10th 1.35.208:
“Today was a really difficult day and I am not very happy at all with my pace or my position. My right arm is not 100% after Silverstone but the main problem is I don’t have any feeling with the bike at all. We need to improve because all I can say is that today was bad and disappointing. Those in front of me can just run a much better pace and there is not one single area that is holding me back. I am struggling everywhere but I won’t give up and I will work hard with my crew tonight to try and find some solutions to be more competitive tomorrow.”
Bradley Smith 14th 1.36.004 min:
“Unfortunately today wasn’t very positive. Misano is a track I like, so to have a result like today is not nice, but it is clear with the final position there is a bigger problem than just the setting. The bad feeling I had in Silverstone is the same here. The good thing is we understand what the issues are now and we know which direction we have to go in. It is frustrating to have the crash but I am pushing to try and get the same feeling back that I had in Brno where I was strong. I believe with all the info we have that we can take a big step forward tomorrow and be faster. Qualifying is very important here with the first section so tight and the run to the first corner quite short, so it is vital to give yourself the best chance to get away with the leading group.”
THE TWISTS AND TURNS OF MISANO MAKE LIFE DIFFICULT FOR BRADL
Misano, 13 September: the San Marino and Riviera di Rimini Grand Prix commenced today in sunny and warm conditions for Stefan Bradl and his colleagues. But the German riding the RC213V had to cope with front-end issues which prevented him to qualify up in the pack at the end of day one. Bradl is a fan of the twisting circuit but he could only set the 9th lap time (1’35.107) hindered by an unexpected lack of confidence in the curves.
“It’s not a special first day for us and I am a bit disappointed because I like this race track. Basically I can not turn like I would like because I am not sure about the reaction of the front tyre. In these conditions I can not be sharp and it’s almost impossible to carry the speed along the corner. I have to slow down and I have to break too much and this is the reason why I crashed in turn six. We have to analyze the data and try another bike set up if we wish to improve”.
gp di san marino e della riviera di rimini, free practice 13/09/2013
Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini rider Alvaro Bautista worked hard on the opening day of the San Marino Grand Prix, establishing a base setting for the Misano circuit ahead of tomorrow's crucial qualifying session. The Spanish rider is still keen to get more out of his RC213V and to close the gap to the top riders in tomorrow morning's third free practice before making his attack on the lap time in the afternoon. Bryan Staring suffered from some front-end chatter but was otherwise satisfied with the job he did on the team's CRT bike.
Alvaro Bautista (6th 1’34.858) “We have had a positive first day here at the team's home race and found a good base setting to work from tomorrow. The track is a bit slippery and we don't have the perfect grip just yet so I don't have the same confidence with the bike that we have enjoyed in recent races. We know what we need to work on though in order to make improvements tomorrow.”
Bryan Staring (23rd 1’ 37” 722) “I am quite satisfied. Unfortunately we had some chatter problems today so I couldn't push as hard as I wanted but I think we have a good platform to work from tomorrow. The hard tyre didn't quite work for us at the end so maybe if we had stuck with the soft we could have ended the day with a better lap time.”
Fausto Gresini “We have had a good couple of sessions today and if we can improve in the final sector of the track then Alvaro should close the gap to the top four. I am sure we can do it and I know that Alvaro and the guys on his side of the garage will be putting in the effort. Bryan didn't do badly and could have gone faster if he had stayed on the soft tyre but it was important for us to try the hard compound for the race.”
PETRUCCI SECOND AMONG THE CRTs, ZARCO FIFTH IN MOTO2
Misano , September 13, 2013 - Positive start for the CAME Iodaracing Team in the San Marino GP. Danilo Petrucci in MotoGP was 13th fastest overall the second free practice session of the day , the second between the CRTs , then Johann Zarco, in Moto2 class, closed the practices with the 5th best lap time of the day.
The first work day on the track named to Marco Simoncelli immediately saw Danilo Petrucci protagonist between CRT with his best lap time 1.35.933 . In search of the ideal feeling, however, is Lukas Pesek, who still has steadily improved his references in the two sessions held today .
Very satisfactory performance of Johann Zarco in Moto2. The French rider of the Team CAME Iodaracing Team clocked the fifth fastest time in the second free practice session in the afternoon, which is an excellent result considering the consequences of the crash of this morning. Zarco in the first free practice session, was knocked off his Suter who continued his run up to crashing head-on with the protections of the track. The technicians of the CAME Iodaracing Moto2 Team , have worked hard to replace the frame of the bike that was bent in the accident, making Zarco able to use a fully restored bike for the second free practice session in the afternoon.
DANILO PETRUCCI - MOTOGP RIDER - 13th IN FP2 - 1.35.933 - "I am very happy with my first day at Misano. I've always been fast and consistent in improvements. Shame about the crash that did not allow me to close even better the second free practices. Unfortunately I lost the rear and I went to the ground, I was unhearted but I'm sure I could improve my time . I'm second between the CRT and this is a good result for me and for the team, tomorrow we will give the maximum ."
LUKAS PESEK - MOTOGP RIDER - 24 ° IN FP2 - 1.38.962 - "I'm still behind but at least I managed to improve my times. We are searching for an ideal set up for my riding style and I am sure that tomorrow we will improve ."
JOHANN ZARCO - MOTO2 RIDER- 5th IN FP2 - 1.38.658 - " The team did a great job after the crash of this morning. Feared in short they were able to get back on track were great and I thank them. The crash of this morning, however, showed that there was something wrong on the bike, and in the afternoon session we were able to find a good set-up that makes me confident for tomorrow . My goal is to do even better, this is a track completely different than those where we have over the past few weeks , it is more narrow and technical , although I like it that very much. "
Grand Prix San Marino: Abraham twentieth after Friday´s practices
Karel Abraham closes second ten of free practices times after the first day of Grand Prix of San Marino in the Marco Simoncelli’s circuit. Abraham reached his maximum in the morning free practice with time 1:37,329 losing 3,11 second to the fastest Marc Marquez. At the end of the afternoon practice the Czech rider had an easy crash on his injured shoulder, but he escaped without any futher injury.
„The shoulder hurts me, but It is possible to ride with it. From my point of view it is not good new for me. I hoped that I would be completely fine or I would find out that I could not ride. Therefor difficult decision making what to do is on duty. I have problem stand to push for a longer time partly because of pain in my shoulder and partly because worse physical condition, caused by one month break in training. Anyway I’m counting on that I will continue in the race weekend regardless to the pain.“
Marco Grana, chief mechanic Cardion AB Motoracing
„We are trying to analyze data from the bike to find out reasons of the afternoon crash. The bike lost the front and also rear in one moment and that is really strange. Moreover in similar way crashed also Bradl in the same corner. Personally I think that there is some bumps on the track. But fortunately Karel is fine. Partly of course, because he is struggling with the pain in shoulder and that is a limiting factor. He loses the power and it is very difficult for him to make more fast laps in a row. We are trying to set up the bike to make it all easier for him. It will be a very difficult race weekend, but I think that we did not started in a bad way.“
ESPARGARÓ IN ANOTHER STRATOSPHERE
POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider fifth fastest and just 0.5 seconds off the top on day one at Misano; Randy De Puniet in eighteenth
On a day that saw Yamaha debut a seamless gearbox in order to improve the performance of their factory machines it was Honda that dominated the free practice timesheets, with Marc Márquez finishing on top of both sessions at Misano. However, with just three tenths of a second separating the top four riders it promises to be a close battle for the remainder of the weekend, with the three Spaniards on top of the championship – Marc Márquez, Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo – joined in the hunt for glory by home hero Valentino Rossi.
After struggling to keep tabs on the factory prototypes at two long and fast tracks in the last two races, Aleix Espargaró rider was 'the best of the rest' today, clocking the fastest time by a non-factory Honda or Yamaha rider. The POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider came into the weekend feeling confident that Misano would suit his ART package much more than Brno or Silverstone and after lapping tenth fastest this morning he produced a stunning lap time with his penultimate effort of the afternoon to launch himself into fifth place overnight, just half a second off Marquez's benchmark. His team-mate Randy De Puniet enjoyed opposing fortunes today and after a positive morning session he lost ground in the afternoon and dropped back to eighteenth place.
5th Aleix Espargaró 1.34.732 (34 laps): “I am satisfied with how we have started the weekend. It is a while since we have had such a good feeling with the bike but I was looking forward to coming here because it's one of my favourite tracks on the calendar and also one of the shortest so I knew it would suit or bike better. We did a great job and on the soft tyre we really closed the gap to the factory machines. I produced a fantastic lap at the end of the second session but we still have a lot of things to improve and hopefully we can make progress before qualifying tomorrow. My feeling and pace on used rubber was surprisingly good today and I don't think we could have made a much better start.”
18th Randy De Puniet 1.36.283 (37 laps): “We started out with the base setting from Silverstone this morning and found some good solutions to the problems we'd had there. Unfortunately in the afternoon the bike felt too aggressive in certain parts of the track, it was shaking quite a lot and I was struggling to keep it in line. We tried to fix it during the time available but we didn't manage so we'll work hard tonight and try to get things back to normal tomorrow.”
FP1 and FP2 conclude at the Misano World Circuit
After completing a total of 20 and 21 laps respectively during FP1 and FP2, and recording a best time of 1.35.218 on his 19th lap of FP2, Andrea Iannone ended the first day of free practice at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli in 11th place, just within a whisker of the Top Ten.
Second free practice for the last round of the championship on Italian soil allowed the Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team rookie to improve by over 1 second and a half his best time set during the morning session. This made up for an unsatisfactory start that had put him down in 17th place due to a total lack of confidence with his Desmosedici.
The team continue to work inside the box while waiting to face again the 4226 meters of the San Marino GP Circuit tomorrow.
Andrea Iannone - Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
“This morning was pretty difficult, we made a lot of effort even though I was expecting that returning to this track would have been easier. I had absolutely no confidence with the bike and the tyres, it was like riding on ice, and I did not have enough feeling to push harder. This afternoon went much better, the tyres had more grip, I could brake stronger and in the end I improved my best time recorded during the last tests on this track. Tomorrow we will try and improve it even more. My shoulder is fine, I now have more strength than in the three previous races, and even if the pain has not gone away totally, it’s okay. Now I need to concentrate for the rest of the weekend.”
Good start for Michele Pirro and the Ignite Pramac Racing Team
The first two combined practice sessions of the thirteenth round of the MotoGP World Championship at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli kicked off in a positive way for the Ignite Pramac Racing Team.
Michele Pirro led the quartet of Ducati riders for most of FP2, ending up in 7th place and a time of 1.34.889, over 8 tenths faster than his best time recorded during FP1, and less than 7 tenths of a second from the leader of the timesheets Marc Marquez. The good feeling with his Desmosedici GP13 'lab' bike right from the first session of the day produced good results, enabling Michele to finish inside the Top Ten.
The team and the Italian rider are now preparing to face a challenging day of qualifying tomorrow, in view of Sunday’s race.
Michele Pirro - Ignite Pramac Racing Team
“It was a good day, and at the end we almost confirmed the times we recorded during the tests. Of course we must improve, but I'm happy. Riding my bike again put me definitely in the condition to be more competitive, I do not say with the top 4 times but definitely within the top ten. I really believe in the project we are working on, I am living ‘first-hand’ the work and commitment that is being made every day, but unfortunately we have not reached the performance at this moment that many people expected, and we still more need time. Today, however, is a small demonstration that something good has been done, the feeling with the front is much better than with the other bike. Now we have to work for a good qualifying session. It is very important.”
Positive first day at Misano for Corti and Edwards
The NGM Mobile Forward Racing Team confirmed yesterday its technical partners for 2014 in a joined press conference with Yamaha. The bike will be a Non Factory bike composed by: a Yamaha 2013 frame, swing arm and engine, Dorna ECU, Akrapovic exhaust and British manufacturer FTR will be responsible to complete the bike. Yamaha representatives are worried that the Non Factory Yamaha might be faster at some race tracks that the factory bikes.
In the mean time riders Colin Edwards and Claudio Corti continue working to aim for top CRTs at the Misano Grand Prix with their FTR – Kawasaki bikes.
The Texan rider and his Italian teammate have had a fantastic start of the Misano GP by finishing the first say of free practices at less than two seconds from the pole with their FTR – Kawasaki bike.
Both riders have yet to determine their choice in front tire for the race and have some minor setting modifications to make for tomorrow in order to improve their lap times and be ready for the qualifying sessions.
“We did not have a bad day today. This morning felt pretty good, we though we would make a couple of changes to the bike for this afternoon. The problem was that this morning we had the soft tire on the front and this afternoon we used the hard tire on the front but I think that for me I can’t get enough grip on the front to get it to turn. So I think that knowing Bridgestone like I do I think the softer tire might possibly work with this temperature at this track. We are going to have to spend some time on that tomorrow to see if it’s any better. Overall the package is working, we just need to find a little bit more.”
“This afternoon things went pretty well. As I have said in the past, I don’t have a good feeling with this track, I need some time on track in order to be able to be fast here. This morning we have made some modifications that seemed to work very well so we have continued working in the direction during the afternoon session and we have had some positive results. The race pace has improved and the fast lap time has been improved by over a second so I am happy. We had some trouble with the tires today; right after making my fast lap I lost the feeling with the front completely. We will have to find a solution that will make me to regain that confidence and that will allow me to improve my race pace. I am in the Top15 as of today, I am not saying that I am completely satisfied but I do feel we have a good base to build-up on. I feel a lot better that I did at Silverstone, I can no longer feel the effects of the Brno crash and I remain very confident for tomorrow.”
“We are happy of the work done during this first day at Misano, we are more or less two seconds away from today’s pole. We still have a problem with the front of the bike, we haven’t yet decided on which tire will be the one we will use for the race. We will keep working on this as well as setting modifications tomorrow morning. We just need a small improvement in order to be higher on the standing. We will try to confirm tomorrow today’s results and continue improving.”
Marquez on the mark in Misano Friday practice
Round 13: San Marino MotoGP™ - Free Practice One & Two
Misano, Friday 13 September 2013
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Medium & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Hard (Main), Soft (Alternative)
Weather: FP1 - Dry. Ambient 20-22°C; Track 26-31°C (Bridgestone measurement)
FP2 - Dry. Ambient 25-25°C; Track 39-39°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez continues to impress after posting the fastest time in practice for the San Marino Grand Prix today, the young Spaniard setting a time of 1’34.200 under sunny skies at Misano.
Marquez led a Repsol Honda 1-2 in Friday practice as Dani Pedrosa was second fastest today with a personal best lap time just 0.033 seconds behind his rookie teammate. Third quickest today was hometown hero Valentino Rossi, the Italian rider setting a lap time of 1’34.458 on his Yamaha Factory Racing M1. Aleix Espargaro showed formidable pace on his Power Electronics Aspar ART machine, taking fifth overall with a time of 1'34.732 to be the highest placed CRT rider on the first day of practice.
Weather conditions throughout the day were dry and warm with the track temperature reaching a maximum of 39°C in the afternoon Free Practice 2 session. The fine conditions resulted in all slick options being utilised today and at this stage of the race weekend, the most widely used combination is the harder front slick paired with the softer rear slick option. Track conditions today for the first day of the race weekend were satisfactory with lap times already getting within a few tenths of the current race lap record.
Similar weather conditions are predicted for tomorrow’s practice and qualifying sessions, with the next MotoGP™ session scheduled for 955 local time (GMT +2).
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“The dry and warm conditions today enabled riders to try a wide range of slick tyre options and already the pace from the front-runners is quite quick, which is a positive sign. Misano is a circuit where an optimal bike setup is very important to get the best from the tyres, so it was good to have two dry sessions today. At this stage the softer rear slick options are the more popular choice, although some riders also evaluated the harder rear slicks and with the possibility of warmer weather tomorrow, we may see more riders give this option a try. The hard compound front slick was preferred as track temperatures became warmer as it offers an advantage in braking and cornering stability over the softer option, which is important at this circuit given its layout. It was a positive start to the race weekend at Misano.”