Press releases from the MotoGP teams after the second day of testing at Sepang:
Marquez back in the groove and fastest with Pedrosa 5th
Day two of the second Sepang test has concluded with Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez back at the top of the time sheets with teammate Dani Pedrosa finishing the day in 5th.
After a difficult first day, where he was unable to work properly due to an issue with the brakes, Marc was keen to get to work on his test programme. It wasn’t long before the reigning World Champion was out in front, becoming the first rider in this second test to lap under 2’00 just before midday. He spent the day working on electronics amongst other items and recorded his fastest lap of 1’59.844 on lap 22 of 63. He had a small crash in the afternoon at turn four, but thankfully remained uninjured. Dani continued to work on suspension settings and set his fastest lap of 2’00.275 on lap 36 of 57.
The three-day test will conclude tomorrow and will be followed by the first test by Factory riders on Michelin tyres in preparation for 2016.
1st 1’59.844 (63 laps)
"I'm happy because today was a positive day. After what happened yesterday, we tried to make up for lost time and tried out quite a few things. Tomorrow we have to continue testing things out, in order to continue developing and eliminating anything that is not going to be useful. Today we focused on electronics and tomorrow we will work more on the chassis. I'm happy with how things went today and with the pace that we have achieved. We'll see if tomorrow the rain holds off all day, because we need good weather."
5th 2’00.275 (57 laps)
“Today we focused on the bike's suspension. We have been testing many different configurations looking to find a good setup. I'm happy with the hard work we have done today. Although it was very hot, we put in a lot of laps and at the end of the day we found a small step, which is positive. We still have many things to improve, but we have progressed and are already in good shape. I am getting more confidence with the bike and have a better feeling with the tyres. In addition, we have identified the good and bad points so I think that at future tests and races we can continue to develop consistently, which is good."
Lorenzo Satisfied after Second Day of Test at Sepang
Sepang International Circuit (Malaysia), 24th February 2015
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi were back on track today for the second of three days of riding for the second IRTA official Sepang Test, finishing in second and fifth place respectively.
With yesterday’s storm having cleared off, today’s dry and bright weather conditions were perfect for more action at the Sepang International Circuit.
Re-energized after a good night’s sleep, Lorenzo adapted well to the morning’s cooler but still slippery track conditions and was quick to position himself at the front of the leaderboard. He rode consistent lap times in the 2’00, before turning the level up a notch further. Clearly feeling comfortable with the bike, the Spaniard dived under the two-minute mark with a hot lap of 1’59,902s, putting him in second place just 0,058s off the front.
Teammate Rossi was quick to find his pace in the morning. He took over the top spot from his teammate just one hour into the session with a 2’00.393s lap, making it a provisional ‘Yamaha 1-2’. He spent the remaining hours further testing various items, but decided to stop early to save some new tyres for tomorrow. His best time today of 2’00.308s puts him in fifth place, just 0.464s off the front.
99 Jorge Lorenzo
2nd / 1'59.902 / 71 laps
“Today was much better. I was able to sleep for more than eight hours so I had much more energy than on the first day. For sure this influenced my performance. The bike was also better. I had a better understanding of how to ride it on slippery track conditions, so I was also able to improve my riding. My pace, apart from the last two hours, was almost all day in the 2’00 lap times. That’s similar to the previous test but with worse conditions, so I’m happy.”
46 Valentino Rossi
6th / 2'00.308 / 61 laps
“We did a lot of testing today. We tried some forks and especially concentrated on rear grip in acceleration to exit from the corner in the best way. We also continued to work on the gearbox and that still gives a good feeling. We will be ready for tomorrow, because that will be the important day. Tomorrow everybody will be at their maximum for the time attack and they can try to do a long run, so I think tomorrow will be very interesting to understand the pace of all the guys. It will be a good target to be a bit faster than the last test and I think we have to improve the lap times and our pace during the simulation.”
“Today the focus has been on the settings for both Jorge and Valentino. We worked on electronics and mechanics to give them the most comfortable position to be able to deliver consistent lap times. Jorge did a really good day; he had speed and also a good, consistent pace. This morning Vale unfortunately had some problems with a stomach bug but we are confident that he will be on form tomorrow. We have covered most of our testing requirements; tomorrow we have just a few items to check and of course a time attack and a race simulation. Fingers cross for no thunderstorms tomorrow.”
New Desmosedici GP15 makes further progress on Day 2 of Sepang testing: Iannone 3rd and Dovizioso 4th
Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team) made further progress today on the second day of pre-season IRTA testing at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia, and after just two days on the new bike both men said that they were very satisfied with the progress being made.
After yesterday’s positive track debut of the Desmosedici GP15, today both Dovizioso and Iannone concentrated on the meticulous job of perfecting settings, chassis and suspension geometry, clocking up the miles and doing numerous exits with the GP15 in order to identify the best possible set-up for the Italian manufacturer’s new MotoGP challenger.
Today it was the turn of Iannone to be the quickest Ducati rider: the man from Vasto immediately improved his time set yesterday by almost two seconds, and then right at the very end shaved off another four-tenths to finish Day 2 in an excellent third place overall with a time of 2’00.098 seconds, just two-tenths away from leader Marc Marquez (Honda) and Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha).
Dovizioso also improved his best lap time by more than one second, bringing it down to 2’00.250 in the morning, a time that propelled him into third place in the standings. In his last run of the day, the man from Forlì twice lapped close to his best mark, but in the end had to settle for fourth place, just a tenth away from his team-mate.
Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29) – 2’00.098 (3rd), 58 laps
“For sure today was a great day. This morning, when we began to lap, I managed to immediately find a better feeling with the GP15 and I am happy that, day after day, doing more and more kilometres with this bike, I can get more feeling. In addition, we managed to improve the bike’s set-up and we were pretty quick. Rather than the time attack I did in the afternoon, I’m happier with the work we carried out throughout the day, because it allowed me to do my time with the hard tyre. The team is working really well, and the bike is improving day after day. It’s improved a lot in the changes in direction and in its nimbleness, it’s quicker between the corners and these are all positive aspects.”
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 2’00.250 (4th), 58 laps
“Today was again very good: I’m pleased if I compare my lap times with those of the other riders. But in my opinion, we still need to do a lot of work, in the sense that we are quick but I can’t yet ride the way I want, and my feeling with the front is still not perfect. We are working hard and trying numerous different set-ups to try and understand how this bike is, because it’s very different from the GP14. It’s clear that there is a lot of enthusiasm because the bike has improved, but we still need more time to improve our performance.”
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51) – 2’01.897 (19th), 41 laps
“Today we didn’t go in search of lap times, instead we carried out a work schedule for the reliability of the Desmosedici here at Sepang, which as we can remember from last year’s race, can be a very critical track due to the high temperatures and so we’re trying to identify some solutions that allow us not to have any problems in the future.”
SUZUKI MOTOGP CLOSES-IN ON SEPANG TOP TIMES
Team Suzuki Press Office – February 24.
SUZUKI MotoGP continued its development of the GSX-RR at Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia today and moved ever-closer to the leading times.
Aleix Espargaro completed 57 laps with a best time of 2:00.409 for ninth on combined times and 0.565 seconds from leader Marc Marquez (Honda). Team mate Maverick Viñales recorded 61 laps with a best time of 2:00.731 which gave him 12th position overall, 0.887 seconds from the top.
Although Viñales suffered a small crash, no damage was suffered by rider or machine. Both riders continue to gain more confidence and set-ups of their machines and will continue tomorrow with some longer race simulations runs.
Davide Brivio – Team Manager:
“Today we have had another positive day because we could bring on our testing plan and we continued positively our learning process. The riders rode many laps today and this gave us the chance of discovering some issues on which we must work in order to be consistent in long runs like a race. Aleix in particular started a long run allowing us to collect important data, while Maverick continued to try some different set-up configurations and he’s learning fast how to feel the bike and give feedback to engineers. It’s a good thing to see that our times are good, closer and closer to the top. Tomorrow we will try further improvements but for the moment everything is going smoothly.”
“I’m happy about the day, especially about the first part of the day. I found a good feeling from the very beginning and we immediately made good lap times. It is important to see that after five days here (including Sepang 1) we are getting closer and closer to the top.
“In the second part of the day we struggled a little with hotter conditions and we encountered some issue with the grip on the back so we need to work more on this. With my riding style I open the throttle early and when the tarmac gets hot we lose grip, so we need to fix it. The first part of the championship will not be in extremely hot weather conditions so we have time to find out a solution.
“We tried a race simulation, we had planned 17 laps in a row, but I had to give up a little earlier because my knee still hurts and I’m not at my 100%. However, the long run gave us important data. We still have two days to test, so we have time to work on the issues we are finding out.”
“It was another positive day. I did many laps and I’m becoming more-and-more familiar with the bike and the setting opportunities. I had a little crash but it wasn’t bad, I’m ok and so is the bike, I simply slid off.
“My main objective is still to find out the most effective riding style, even if we are introducing new technical modifications in every run to let me understand how the machine reacts to them. I also tried a small race simulation, just to start approaching the long runs, but tomorrow we will do more testing on this side.”
APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI: SECOND DAY OF TESTING AT SEPANG
Sepang (Malaysia), 24 February 2015 - On the Sepang track, scorching from the almost 40°C temperatures, the MotoGP took on the second day of collective testing, the penultimate stop before getting down to business with the first round in Qatar scheduled for 29 March.
In the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini garage work continued non-stop on developing the RS-GP, the new project the Italian team will use - a year ahead of the originally announced schedule and simultaneous with efforts in WSBK, successfully launched at Phillip Island - to take on their rookie season in the top category of Grand Prix Motorcycle Racing. A lot of work was done again today on testing new material.
The two riders took on different strategies. While Alvaro Bautista, who knows the MotoGP class inside and out, continued looking for a basic setup, both in terms of chassis and electronics, Marco Melandri tackled the day by continuing his comparison of the two bikes with different characteristics, one decidedly closer to the SBK Marco rode until last year, and the other an evolution of the RS-GP in the version used during the autumn tests in Spain. For Marco the goal is to find the right feeling with the new tyres, an inevitable process before being able to push hard.
At the end of the day, with 40 laps put in, Alvaro Bautista, who tested various evolutionary steps of the RS-GP, collected some important data by exploring some solutions, especially where the chassis is concerned, which are very different than the "base" which had been established up to now. The sensations Alvaro gathered will now be analysed by Aprilia mechanics and translated based on the day tomorrow, the last day on the track with Bridgestone tyres.
“Days like today are important when you're developing a new project. With a few changes to the electronics yesterday we were able to take a small step forward from our last tests, whereas today we focused on the chassis, especially working on improving performance going into turns. We tested a lot of new details and although the time sheets don't bear it out, the tests gave us some hints to analyse for the future. Tomorrow the plan is to go back to the base setup that I prefer and put in a long run where we'll be able to see how the bike performs as the tyres wear.”
In the number 33 garage the session unwound going over what had been done yesterday, continuing the comparison between the decidedly different two bikes. This was a choice made for two reasons: to give Marco time to gain familiarity with the technical characteristics of the new materials without putting any pressure on him, and to combine the positive aspects of the information collected on both solutions in order to define the evolution of the RS-GP project.
“Today we continued the work we started yesterday, starting with the SBK derived bike and then moving on to the RS-GP. Unfortunately the time sheets are still not rewarding us. I still don't have that feeling that will let me push and ride the way I'd like to. We aren't struggling in any particular area; it's just the overall feeling that needs to improve before we'll be able to get our times down. Tomorrow we'll continue the tests. I'm certainly not expecting a revolution, but any improvement will be crucial.”
Smith increases the pace on day two in Malaysia
Bradley Smith continued his testing assault at the Sepang International circuit on day two by producing another encouraging performance to close the session in seventh position. The young British rider completed 50 laps around the famous Malaysian circuit and clocked his best time of 2’00.329 on the 49th lap at the end of the day. His performance highlighted a significant cut of nine tenths of a second from yesterday and saw him notably only 0.231 back from third position. Headway was made today after some constructive work by the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team with the English rider who will seek to maintain the positive momentum tomorrow as he grows more confident with the 2015 specification Yamaha YZR-M1 on every run.
Meanwhile, Pol Espargaro continued the vigorous testing of his Yamaha 2015 YZR-M1 today as he undertook 44 laps in the searing heat at the Sepang circuit. The 2013 Moto2 World Champion posted a best time of 2’00.689 on his 8th lap at the dawn of the test session, before eventually finishing in 10th position. Nevertheless, the Spaniard made steps forward and his time was quicker than yesterday’s best by almost two tenths of a second as he upholds his positive pre season form. Tomorrow, he will be back on track where he will proceed with his testing programme and seek to close the gap to the leader in lap times.
Position : 7th Time : 2'00.329 Laps : 50
"Today was a really positive day for me and the team. We began by doing a race simulation in the morning which was our main objective, in order to collect data and feedback. In addition, it was also so that I could understand the new 2015 Yamaha better and see how it handles during a race simulation with full fuel load or used tyres. The race run was very positive and I was able to stay consistently strong during the 20 laps, which indicates the team have done a good job and I have also with my training during the winter months. This afternoon I was able to improve the lap time and it was the closest that I have been to the front so far as I was just behind Valentino and 0.3 from Jorge, which is pleasing. Tomorrow we just need to continue with the testing programme and improving the bike. We are already doing a great job and are 95% there."
Position : 10th Time : 2'00.689 Laps : 44
"Today was a tricky day for us, but I still remain positive and am ready to bounce back tomorrow. We actually began the day well and I put in a fast time quite close to the beginning of the session on the 8th lap. However, then we lost some time as we were trying some new settings and we couldn’t find the grip level that I needed to go faster in order to cut the gap to the leaders. Then at the beginning of the afternoon, I had a crash which really didn’t help matters at all and we lost valuable time because of it. Despite it being a challenging day, I am upbeat and we will keep the positive feeling from yesterday plus, use the data we collected today to close tomorrow on a high."
Further improvement for Redding in Sepang
Sepang, Malaysia – 24 February 2015: The second day of testing at Sepang proved a positive one for Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS, as Scott Redding again improved his pace to finish the day 13th and less than a second off the fastest time.
Redding struggled initially to get the rear tyre working for him this morning, when track conditions were at their best for fast lap times, but the 22-year-old Briton was immediately back on the pace following a tyre change on his factory Honda RC213V.
Together with his crew Redding focussed today on refining set up to improve feedback from the front tyre, giving him more confidence as his pace increased. This work was rewarded with Redding’s fastest lap time of the test so far, which placed him just 0.5s off a top three position at the end of the day.
Redding and Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS will return to the Sepang International Circuit tomorrow for the third and final day of testing.
Scott Redding: 13th – 2.00.762
“We struggled for most of the morning, during the time when the track conditions were at their best, as we couldn’t get the tyre to work for us. When we switched tyres then the lap time came immediately, so I guess we were just unlucky with that particular tyre. I’m still learning; changing the set up a little to try and get more feeling from the front, because I’m starting to push the the front more now I’m going faster. I was quicker today than I was at the last test, even though the track conditions aren’t as good, and I’m less than a second off the fastest guys, so I’m happy with that. Every lap gives me a better understanding of the bike; a lot of these guys have more experience on the bike, so they know what to expect, but I’m still on a steep learning curve with the Honda RC213V. We have a target, but I don’t want to get fixated on the lap time, for me it’s better to continue the learning process here in Sepang.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“Scott made another step forward today with the bike, improving his lap time to finish the day less than a second from the top of the timesheet for the first time. Without the tyre issue this morning I think it was possible for him to close the gap even further, but getting to within half a second of a top three position shows our approach is paying dividends. Both Scott and the team are on a steep learning curve, but I’m happy with the speed at which we’re progressing and I’m looking forward to a further improvement during tomorrow’s third and final day of testing here at Sepang.”
Petrucci is fast and ends 11th. Hernandez completes 46 laps
Pramac Racing ended the second testing day at Sepang well with 11th place for Danilo Petrucci and positive indications from Yonny Hernandez.
Danilo Petrucci immediately showed a good feeling with the bike and managed to stay in the Top 10 until the last lap of the session. The Italian rider notched up a time of 2'00''713 which earned him 11th position, less than one second away from Marc Marquez's quickest time of the day (1'59''844). In the afternoon, as the temperature increased creating more difficult track conditions, Petrucci carried out set up work on his Desmosedici GP14 and managed to complete 56 laps.
Positive feedback also came from Yonny Hernandez whose physical condition is improving, and he managed to cut his Monday time by more than 1.5 seconds.
Hernandez ended with a laptime of 2'01''012, less then 4 tenths away from the Top 10. He has not completely recovered from injury yet but the pain did not prevent him from working hard and completing 46 laps.
Danilo Petrucci - Pramac Racing Team #9 - 2'00''713 (11°)
"A good day for me. I'm a little disappointed for missing out on the Top 10 at the chequered flag but Smith was lapping stronger and he deserved it. Maybe I could have done a little better trying to set my fastest lap but the telemetry showed that I made a mistake in the last corner. The position in the standings is less important than the laptime today. I could have ended 9th just by being two tenths faster: 14 riders are within a second of each other. I thank the team that has put me in the position to do a good job. Tomorrow we will go early on the track in qualifying conditions. My goal is the top 10 but I'd be happy to come back home with the same feelings I have now".
Yonny Hernandez - Pramac Racing Team #68 - 2'01''012 (15°)
“It has been a hard day for me. When I try to push to set my fastest lap I always feel a lot of pain. But I'm quite happy compared to yesterday. I know I have to work even harder than today. I need to lap a lot to fix the problem but at the same time I want to stay much higher in the timesheets. Today I managed to complete 46 laps, almost double than yesterday. And the pain is quite the same. That makes me think positive in view of the last testing day (with Bridgestone tyres) here at Sepang".
Work continues at Sepang for the Forward Racing team
Another day of work is over at Sepang for the Forward Racing team and its riders Stefan Bradl and Loris Baz.
Bradl and Baz continued the development work of their Forward Yamaha in view of the upcoming 2015 season and the race debut in Qatar. The German completed 58 laps and he managed to improve his lap time by more than a second compared to yesterday. Bradl ended the session in 16th place in the time sheet with a personal best of 2.01.131.
The day was more complicated for his team-mate who crashed, fortunately without consequences, in the morning session. The Frenchman has improved significantly compared to yesterday as he stopped the clock on 2.02.426, 24th in the overall standings.
"Like yesterday, I suffered some lack of grip particularly on the rear and on corner entry. The conditions are very different from the first test and this makes things more demanding for us. We tried several new solutions to better balance the bike and I'm sure tomorrow we will concentrate more on the lap time."
"This morning I was on track aiming to improve my performance. Unfortunately the track conditions are very different from the first test and this does not help me. At the end of the morning session I crashed, fortunately without consequences, but this has had an impact on today testing. In the afternoon I went back on the track, I was running on worn tires almost all the time to concentrate on the setup. Tomorrow will be the last day of work here in Sepang and we are confident we can do well."
Hector Barbera remains the fastest Open bike in Sepang
Avintia Racing MotoGP – Winter Test 2015 – Sepang 2
The Spanish Avintia Racing team rider, Hector Barbera, was again the fastest Open bike on the second day in Sepang, only 1.003 seconds slower than the best lap of the day made by the double MotoGP World Champion, Marc Marquez. But the most positive thing is that Barberá was able to use the test to work in his race pace and get a better understanding of his Ducati when the tyres start to drop, something crucial when the season starts in Qatar. For tomorrow, the last of three days of testing, the target for Barbera and the Avintia Racing team will be leaving Malaysia as the best Open bike.
His team mate, Mike Di Meglio, still with his learning process, because although the former 125 World Champion made his debut in MotoGP last season, he would never imagine all the set up possibilities that his Ducati Desmosedici GP14 Open offers. But working close with the Avintia Racing and Ducati engineers, the Frech rider is improving his feeling everyday.
HÉCTOR BARBERÁ #8 14th 2'00.847 / @HectorBarbera
We have made a great job today and we have been able to test many settings, get a lot of information playing with the tyre pressure. I’m happy because all the things we are learning here will be very useful to be more constant during the races, not just to make a fast lap. The track conditions today remained estrange if we compare with how it was two weeks ago, but anyway we improved our lap time, that is also the best lap I’ve ever made here in Sepang. So I think that we are doing a great job. To be the best Open again is good, but you don’t get any points in testing, so we have to keep working hard to get into the first race in Qatar at the maximum.
MIKE DI MEGLIO #63 22nd 2’02.006 / @Mikejpp63
The first part of the day was really difficult because I had fever during the night and I felt really tired when I woke up this morning. Thanks to the Clinica Mobile I could get on the bike with a better physical condition. We also found a base set up, similar to the one Hector has, and works very well. In the afternoon we kept making steps forward and we also worked a lot with the electronics and every time I got on the bike I felt more comfortable. The problem is that everything is new and I can see that last year was almost useless. I did not learn anything about electronics, suspensions and all the things you have in la real MotoGP bike.
MILLER SEES ADVANCES AFTER PUNISHING DAY AT SEPANG
On the second day of testing at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia, CWM LCR Honda’s Jack Miller was much happier with a busy day of work as he continues to adapt to the Honda RC213V-RS he will race in this year’s MotoGP World Championship.
Last year’s runner-up in the Moto3 World Championship found going tough on the first day back at the South-East Asian track, but today was back into the groove of making steady improvements as he and the team prepare for the opening race of the season in Qatar in late March.
Rain had affected yesterday’s first day of practice, and although the track is normally at its best first thing in the morning, today the riders found that the downpours had made grip levels worse.
Miller was no different, and eventually set his best lap of the day once the suffocating humidity and searing temperatures had dropped off late in the afternoon. He set his best time of 2’01.968 with his 65th and final lap of the day, a heavy workload in such difficult conditions. The Aussie suffered a small lowisde as he hit turn one after his fast lap, but both bike and rider were unscathed.
Testing continues at Sepang tomorrow for the whole MotoGP field.
Jack Miller #43, 21st (2’01.968 lap 65 of 65)
“Finally, I can say I’m a little bit happier today. We made some progress with the bike and it’s becoming more and more comfortable to ride a MotoGP bike. Towards the end of the day we made some bigger steps, but we still have a job to do tomorrow because I’m still not at the level I would like to be. Nonetheless, I think we can be happy with how things stand after today.”
CRUTCHLOW MAKES FURTHER IMPROVEMENTS AT STEAMY SEPANG
On the second day of testing at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia, CWM LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow made yet more progress as he continues his adaptation to the factory Honda RC213V he will race in this year’s MotoGP World Championship.
The Briton has steadily improved his pace over the winter test programme, discovering every aspect of the bike as he and the team prepare for the opening race of the season in Qatar in March.
Rain had affected yesterday’s first day of practice, and although the track is normally at its best first thing in the morning, today the riders found that the downpours had made grip levels worse.
As such, Crutchlow set his best lap of the day once the stifling humidity and peak temperatures of 33°C had subsided late in the afternoon. He made a quick run on new tyres on his 61st and final lap, to set his best time of the test so far - a 2’00.333.
Cal Crutchlow #35, 8th (2’00.333, lap 61 of 61)
“Today was better in terms of lap time, and I’m much happier with our pace on a new tyre. I still believe we can improve a lot, but I think the track condition wasn’t the best today, albeit it’s the same for everybody. I think we did well in the situation and we improved with every run.”
“We understand the bike a lot more now, and I am looking forward to tomorrow’s final day of testing on Bridgestone tyres to see if we can find a better setting for the Qatar test and subsequent race. There is still something to find in corner entry, but I’m happy enough after today’s performance.”