2015 Qatar MotoGP Saturday Post-Qualifying Press Releases

Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after qualifying at Qatar:


Fantastic pole position for Andrea Dovizioso in Qatar GP qualifying at Losail. Andrea Iannone fourth on the grid

Andrea Dovizioso put in a splendid performance in qualifying for the Grand Prix of Qatar as the Ducati Team’s Italian rider powered to pole position with a time of 1’54.113, at the same time taking the brand-new Desmosedici GP15 to its race debut in the best possible way.

Team-mate Andrea Iannone also had a really good run, and he ended the crucial fifteen minute qualifying session in fourth place with a time of 1’54.521, which was good enough for a row 2 start in Sunday’s 22-lap race.

Iannone and Dovizioso had previously stormed to first and second in the fourth free practice session (FP4) before qualifying, both men always using the medium compound rear tyre and lapping in excellent times.

In Q2, both Ducati Team riders instead used the soft rear tyre at their disposal: in that session Dovizioso set his best time to grab the pole on lap 5, while Iannone posted his fastest time on the sixth lap.

Today’s was the second pole position on a Ducati for Andrea Dovizioso after the one he obtained last year at Motegi, and the third in his MotoGP career.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 1’54.113 (1st)

“I am very pleased because today’s pole position is the result of the work of an entire team of people: after two years in which we have suffered, finally we have succeeded in making a really competitive bike, and to be honest I did not think that we would be immediately so fast with the GP15. We worked really well during all the tests, even though we did not have much time available to develop the new bike. With the soft tyre, we managed to set a really awesome time, but even in the fourth free practice session with the medium tyre the feeling with the GP15 was something special, so I’m confident and I think that tomorrow we can fight for the podium. I want to thank Ducati and all the engineers who worked day and night in Bologna to get the bike ready for the Sepang 2 test, and I hope that I have been able to repay them with today’s pole position.”

Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29) – 1’54.521 (4th)

“I am satisfied with the way things went today, because in FP4 we were very quick with the medium tyres, even though I had possibly hoped to obtain something a bit more in qualifying. I would have liked to have started on the front row, but as I had hardly ever used the soft tyre I didn’t have much of a feeling with it and in addition we had a bit too much power on my bike and the set-up wasn’t the best. However, we must be happy with the way we are working and improving, so it wasn’t bad as a first qualifying session of the year. Congratulations to Andrea, who managed to set pole. Overall I am pleased, especially regarding the race tomorrow: it will be important to have the right set-up to be able to make up a few tenths on Andrea and Marc, who both have a very good pace.”


Double Repsol Honda front row for opening GP of 2015

Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez will start tomorrow’s Qatar GP from 2nd and 3rd on the grid respectively.

Dani was the first rider to set a hot lap in the Q2 session and then improved on his second flying lap with his time of 1’54.330, placing him on provisional pole. Marc then set a time of 1’54.437 on his first fast lap to slot in behind Dani in second place as the riders returned to the pits for a fresh rear tyre.

On their second run, neither Repsol Honda rider was able to improve their time but missed out on a 1-2 start in the dying moments as Andrea Dovizioso went top of the time sheets with his lap of 1’54.113, using the super soft tyre.

The riders have a brief 20 minute warm up session tomorrow at 17h00 and then the 22 lap race will begin at 21h00 local time.

Dani Pedrosa

2nd 1'54.330

“I am very happy with today's qualifying session and it was very important to get onto the front row. It was fantastic, because I think that it was one of my fastest laps at this track. It was vital to set a good lap time today, without making any mistakes, due to the fact that at this track all the times are very close together. Now we have to focus for the race."

Marc Marquez

3rd 1'54.437

“Our objective was to get onto the front row and we succeeded, so I’m happy. Of course, you always want to do more, and I would have liked to have set a better lap, but we have a good setup for tomorrow and a good pace, which is the most important thing. It will be difficult to keep up with Andrea because, besides a fast one-off lap, he also has good race pace. We will try to ride our own race and fight for the win."


Lorenzo Secures Second Row Start in Intense Qatar Qualifying

Losail International Circuit (Qatar), 28th March 2015

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi pushed hard this evening at the Losail International Circuit to take sixth and eighth respectively on the grid in qualifying for tomorrow‘s Grand Prix of Qatar.

Lorenzo was the last rider to start the 15-minute qualifying heat to be ensured of some clear track space to push out his flying laps. He immediately dropped under the 1‘55 mark on his first hot run before posting a 1'54.803, to move up to provisional fourth in the timesheets. With less than five minutes left he came in for a fresh set of tyres to have another go at a time attack only a minute later. The double MotoGP Champion gave his all on his third flying lap of the day and improved his time with a 1'54.711 lap to finish the session in sixth place, 0.598s off the front.

Teammate Rossi continued to make progress today. The nine-time World Champion was quick to get out on track, making the most of the short time given to post a flying lap. His first stint saw him briefly take provisional fourth position with a 1'55.192 lap, but a flurry of activity then pushed him down four places. Rossi moved back up to sixth in the timesheets with a 1'54.995 before he returned to the pits. He came back out on track with five minutes of the session remaining for a last hot lap. Now back in eighth place, he gave his all and clocked a 1'54.851, 0.738s from pole position. This time briefly put him in seventh place, before the pace of the field picked up. Rossi will start tomorrow‘s race from the third row of the grid in eighth place.

99 Jorge Lorenzo

6th / 1'54.711 / 7 laps

“My position is not so bad, considering that a lot of riders have an extra tyre. Winning is very difficult here, because for the moment we haven‘t found the perfect set-up. In FP4 we got a tyre that didn‘t have any grip, but in qualifying, luckily, we got the first tyre working very well. The second tyre had less grip, but wasn‘t too bad. I made quite a good time considering the condition of the track. We have to work. We don‘t know what‘s going to happen tomorrow on the long distance with the softer tyre. It‘s going to be hard to maintain our pace throughout the whole race, but I‘m physically and mentally prepared to give the maximum.”

46 Valentino Rossi

8th / 1'54.851 / 7 laps

“I hoped to achieve a better position on the grid, but it‘s not so bad. For sure the second row would have been better than the third, but the bike‘s pace was good and I had quite a good feeling. The pace was not so bad, though Marquez and Dovizioso‘s was better, but it‘s just Saturday. We have to work, try to improve and save the tyres as much as possible to have a better pace at tomorrow‘s race.”

Massimo Meregalli

Team Director

“Another step has been made by both our riders today. We will try to find something for the warm-up to increase the rear tyre's life. The riders are comfortable on the bike and quite satisfied about the way the bike is behaving. I think it‘s going to be a really tough race tomorrow, especially at the beginning, when a lot of riders will be fighting for the front group. In the end, I expect that only a few riders are going to be able to fight for the victory. We will try to find something in the warm-up to perfect the bikes‘ set-ups so we‘re ready to compete.”


TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR AIMING HIGH FOR QATAR RACE

Team Suzuki Press Office – March 28

Team SUZUKI ECSTAR ended tonight’s final qualifying for the opening round of the 2015 MotoGP™ World Championship on a positive with team riders Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales fighting hard for a top-10 place.

Espargaro worked hard in Q2 after yesterday’s strong performance with fourth position on the timesheets aboard his 2015 GSX-RR and series rookie Viñales came close to the top of the Q1 qualification, but just lost-out on getting into Q2 by a fraction of a second.

During the FP4 session, both riders worked to finalise their set-ups with hard tyres, finally testing ‘used’ tyres to get ready to find a good race-pace. Qualifying saw both young Spaniards fight hard – even if their final positions didn’t reflect the promise they showed in the earlier practice sessions.

Espargaro will start tomorrow’s Qatar MotoGP in 11th place from the fourth-row with a best lap of 1'55.035 today - less than a second off the Pole Position - and Viñales is in 13th place and on the fifth-row with a best-lap of 1'55.246.

Davide Brivio – Team Manager:

“Well it’s time to start our championship! Tomorrow is race-day and we can’t wait. With Aleix in qualifying we had the potential to do better but sadly we couldn’t, but tomorrow we will deploy everything we have learnt so far; in testing and in the practice sessions. Maverick did improve a lot during the whole weekend and finally today using the soft tyre - with which he has very little experience - he scored what I consider a very good time. Now we can think about the race and we are confident as both riders proved to have a good pace. With many years out of MotoGP™, for us it is very important to take notes and learn as much as possible to continue our development process. At this point we are very interested to see what will happen tomorrow.”

Aleix Espargaro:

“I’m satisfied with the last free practice session. I found a confident pace while testing a hard tyre over a distance - which is even longer than the race - so I’m happy with that. However, I’m more disappointed with my performance with the soft tyre as I couldn’t find a proper feeling with it. I did make some mistakes in qualifying and this resulted in a poor lap. Of course it is important that we have a good overall condition for the race, so I’m looking forward to the green light come tomorrow.”

Maverick Viñales:

“I’m pretty happy with my performance, apart from not getting into Q2, but I managed to cut nearly half-a-second from yesterday, so we are quite happy overall. For tomorrow we need to work on pace with the hard tyre to cut some tenths off our time and be closer to the top. I’m curious to see how the race will be. I’m a rookie in this class and the other competitors are very tough, but we have clear idea on our objectives and we will stick to them.”


EVEN IN THE FINAL SESSIONS DEVELOPMENT OF THE APRILIA RS-GP DOES NOT STOP. BAUTISTA PUT HIS BEST TIME OF THE WEEKEND ON THE SHEETS IN QUALIFYING

Losail (Qatar), 28 March 2015 - The Saturday practice, the final free practice session and then the timed qualifiers to determine the starting grid order, concluded the final approach to the first GP of the season for Aprilia Racing Team Gresini. This round marks the Aprilia RS-GP bikes' racing début.

Just like the rest of the weekend in the Qatar desert, the team used this last day of practice as a further step in the development of the fledgling project. In fact, in the final 30 minute free practice session the work on various setups and different electronics strategies took a step forward.

During the first qualifying session valid for deciding the starting grid order, Bautista put his best time of the weekend on the sheets with 1'56,187, whereas Melandri lagged a bit behind with 1'57,934. With these times Alvaro earned a spot on the seventh row and Marco took a place on the ninth for the race tomorrow.

ROMANO ALBESIANO (Aprilia Racing Manager)

"Alvaro's performance is important because we are close to other teams and other bikes that we know are much further along than us in both development and MotoGP experience. This gives us high hopes for growth which is obviously starting completely from scratch. Tomorrow we'll be racing and so the level of sizing ourselves up against our rivals will rise even further. This is an essential element for the direction our development is moving."

FAUSTO GRESINI (Team Manager)

"I'm very pleased with Alvaro's performance. He added his own touch and in the end a positive signal came out which is an encouragement to the entire team. We must never give up and we must have the strength and ability to believe. Now we need to focus on the race. Our first goal will be to finish the race and doing it the best way we can at the moment means giving it our all."

ALVARO BAUTISTA

"My feeling on the bike hasn't changed a lot but we have improved on the electronics front. During the qualifiers I was only able to get two fast laps in, but in any case we were able to improve our times. When I tried to take a bit more of a risk on the flying lap the bike responded well at the front going into turns and I was able to lap fairly fast. We still don't have much information in this area, so we would like to be able to gather more in order to test and achieve that good feeling consistently. For everything else we'll keep working on the electronics and the way the frame performs in turns, particularly going in, as well as trying to find better grip. The race will be difficult tomorrow without and doubt, but we will be looking at it as a test. Our goal is to get to the end with good sensations, trying to maintain as consistent a pace as possible. After a complicated day like yesterday today went better and I want to thank the team for that."

MARCO MELANDRI

"Despite our hard work, even today we didn't gather as much as we had hoped. We need to lap, accumulate information and translate it into the evolution of the bike. Right now I'm not riding to my full potential and I can feel that. The Championship level is incredibly high. As rookies we have a very difficult challenge before us."


Pramac Racing: amazing Top 10 with Yonny (5°) and Petrux (9°)

In the first qualifying session of the 2015 MotoGP season at the Losail circuit in Doha, Qatar, the energy of Pramac generators lit the wonderful evening of the Pramac Racing Team who finished with two riders in the Top 10. An extraordinary result reflected on the first three rows of the starting grid with the fifth place of Yonny Hernandez who will start from the second row and the ninth place of Danilo Petrucci who won the third.

The rider from Medellin started from Q2 after the seventh time setted in the free practices and in his second run he notched up the time of 1'54.657 which propelled him to the provisional third place and then allowed him to end up in fifth place, half a second from Andrea Dovizioso's pole.

A double satisfaction for Danilo Petrucci as the pilot from Terni first won the Q1 with a time of 1'55.094 then lapped even stronger in Q2 lowering his time by two tenths managing end up with a laptime of 1'54.876.

5th Yonny Hernandez - Pramac Racing # 68 - 1'54.675

"It's a great laptime and I am very happy. The work the whole team is carrying out is going in the right direction. This is a level significantly better than last year. The feeling with the bike is really good. I have to thank Ducati and Pramac Racing for giving me the opportunity to be involved in this ambitious project. I hope to keep on improving. I want to work hard and learn, trying to give my the best workout after workout, race after race. Tomorrow? The moment of truth. We will fight 100% to do the best and to try to finish in the Top 10".

9th Danilo Petrucci - Pramac Racing # 9 - 1'54.876

"In FP3 we had some bad luck. This made me very angry, but it gave me the energy to face the Q1: I lapped alone setting a great time. During the second time attack in Q2 I was running very fast but I made a little mistake in corner 9 which did not allow me to record a better laptime. But i'm very happy and I thank the team for the excellent work done tonight. The race will be very tough. I will be with the top riders and I will try to learn as much as possible. It's my first race with a Ducati and I hope to manage this new situation well. I knew I could be competitive and I wanted to be. It's beautiful night. I hope to replicate it tomorrow".


Redding ready for season opener in Qatar

Losail, Qatar – 28 March 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda rider Scott Redding will kick off the 2015 MotoGP World Championship in Qatar from 14th position on the grid.

Working tirelessly again to try and improve front-end confidence and rear grip with his Honda RC213V machine, Redding narrowly missed out on a place in the QP2 shootout when he finished fourth fastest in the earlier 15-minute QP1 session.

The 22-year-old Briton was less than 0.2s from progressing into QP2, which would have been a morale-boosting accomplishment after a difficult weekend searching for the optimum set-up with the RC213V machine.

Redding remains confident though that he can mark his debut for Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda in tomorrow night’s 22-lap race with a top 10 finish.

Scott Redding: 14th - 1’55.428

“It was another difficult night, so it was a shame I was so close to moving into the second qualifying session. That was my target to make it into QP2 but I don’t have the feeling from the front I need to push with confidence and I’m lacking rear grip too. I am confident I can fight for the top 10 but the pace is really fast and everybody is really close. I’m yet to 100% gel with the Honda, so it will be a difficult race, but one that will be great to gain data and experience from to help us make progress in the future.”

Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal

“The target for tonight was to get into QP2, so we are a little disappointed to miss out, even if the margin was very close and the soft tyre some riders have is a significant advantage. The team and Scott have worked really hard to improve the bike, and while we have made progress, it has not been enough. I’ve no doubt Scott is capable of a top 10 finish and in a learning year for him and the team, that would represent a satisfactory start to 2015.”


CRUTCHLOW STARTS 12TH AT QATAR AFTER QUALIFYING CRASH

The first qualifying session of the 2015 MotoGP World Championship was a hard fought affair, with both CWM LCR Honda riders hitting the deck ahead of tomorrow’s 20-lap Grand Prix of Qatar.

Britain’s Cal Crutchlow went into the session as one of the surprise favourites to score a front row start, having been second-fastest after free practice. The 29 year-old looked well on the way to achieving that feat with his second attempt at a fast lap, but although he was on a scorching lap, he slid out at the fast turn 14 right-hander.

Thankfully the Coventry-born rider was unhurt and will start the race in 12th position on the grid, having set a best lap of 1’55.123 with his first qualifying run.

Cal Crutchlow #35, 12th – 1’55.123 (+1.010, lap 3 of 5)

“Thankfully it’s just my pride that is hurt today, but obviously I’m not happy. I made a stupid mistake. The positive is that we were very fast and we had a great chance to get on the front row and my ideal time would have put us there. But hey, that’s racing! The other guys did a better qualifying and we were 12th.”

“The race is going to be very difficult now, because I know how these guys are at the start of the race – they push so hard. We need to come up with our strategy; whether we relax and wait to pass them later, or just hammer on from the start of the race. There’s not too much to lose, so my instinct is to try and battle hard immediately!”


Smith to charge from 7th on the grid for opening Qatar race

Bradley Smith will begin his 2015 MotoGP campaign from the head of the third row of the grid after a brilliant display of determination in qualifying at Qatar. The young British rider started the day confidently by completing FP4 in 7th place, before challenging in qualifying session one. Here, the 23 year old rider undertook a superb effort in the dying seconds to post a time of 1’55.235 and move through to the second 15 minute shootout. The final qualifying saw Smith meet the chequered flag in 7th place after speeding to a best lap of 1’54.732. This was all the more impressive in the fiercely competitive class with the first eleven riders of the grid being covered by under a second. Furthermore, Smith’s lap was only six tenths of a second from the pole position time and his qualifying performance sees him primed for tomorrow’s 22 lap sprint.

Meanwhile Pol Espargaro will start the first race of the year from 10th position on the grid aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1 under the floodlights. The young Spanish rider completed FP4 in 6th place with a positive display before qualifying session two commenced. Here the 2013 Moto2 World champion leapt into action at the Losail International circuit and by the close of the intense shootout, the Spaniard produced a best time of 1’55.004, with a gap of only half a second separating him from the front row. Espargaro’s tenacious performance in qualifying leaves him poised for a top points scoring finish tomorrow in order to kick start his 2015 season positively.

Bradley Smith

Position : 7th Time : 1'54.732 Laps : 7

"I’m really happy with today’s performance and it’s pleasing to finish so close to the second row. I certainly didn’t make it easy on myself as I had to go through QP1! Yet, I think we’ve been battling with some tyre issues recently. The one I had yesterday wasn’t good and the same thing happened again in QP1 today but we didn't adjust anything else on the bike other than changing the tyre and I improved by half a second. It’s a bit of a gamble with tyres at the moment because of the test and the tyres have been warmed up and then cooled down quite a lot. Anyway, I will start the race from 7th on the grid and I will certainly be in the hunt for a good result. I am feeling optimistic and my race pace is positive so I’m confident of a strong finish to begin this year. I made it count when it mattered today and gave my absolute all, so although I didn’t help myself initially, we’ve pulled through and now I’m ready for tomorrow."

Pol Espargaro

Position : 10th Time : 1'55.004 Laps : 7

"All in all, I can’t be too dissatisfied about the day. The final free practice went very well as we managed to solve some issues with the used tyres which we were having over the weekend. However, after that, we had to start qualifying with new tyres and so we had to face a few other things that we need to adjust for tomorrow. Nevertheless, our bike has been competitive and I believe that we are ready for the race. Of course, starting from the fourth row of the grid won’t make things any easier and for sure, the Ducati’s will be strong, especially at the beginning before their tyres begin to drop. Yet, our rhythm is not too bad and if we can be aggressive at the start and then maybe pass some of the bikes in front of us, we can commence the 2015 season on a high."


MILLER UNSCATHED AFTER QUALIFYING CRASH IN QATAR

The first qualifying session of the 2015 MotoGP World Championship was a hard fought affair, with both CWM LCR Honda riders hitting the deck ahead of tomorrow’s 20-lap Grand Prix of Qatar.

Jack Miller was one of 15 riders out in the first qualifying session, hoping to take one of the two slots in the final, but a front end crash on his first run consigned him to 22nd position on the grid.

The young Australian rookie picked himself up from the gravel and sprinted back to the garage, but he was unable to improve on his previous best of 1’56.287, which means he will start from the head of row eight on the grid.

Jack Miller #43, 22nd – 1’56.287 (+1.193, lap 2 of 6)

“I’ve been struggling all weekend just rolling through the corner, and just as I got on the gas it took a bit of load away from the front and it just seemed to tuck on me. I managed to get back to the pit but we got caught a bit off guard and we had to rush to put things together on the spare bike - I had to ride it a bit more ‘manually’ than normal.”

“We did the best we could, I was just pushing that little bit too hard. I still haven’t quite worked out how to use the soft tyre, but I’m looking forward to the race because I’m much happier on the harder option. It’s just a shame we’re starting a little further back than I would like.”


Mission accomplished for Avintia Racing

Avintia Racing MotoGP – Grand Prix of Qatar – QP

Riders always want more and both Hector Barbera and Mike Di Meglio would like to get into the Q2 to improve their position on the grid, but the Avintia Racing team achieved their target before coming to Qatar to be the quickest in the Open class. There is no doubt that this is a prize for everybody inside the Avintia Racing in the debut of the team with Ducati in the Losail International Circuit. But we can’t relax because tomorrow comes the most difficult part of the weekend: the race. The warm up session will be crucial to refine the set up of Hector Barbera and Mike Di Meglio’s Ducatis Demosedici GP14.1 Open and help them to fight for the best possible positions.

HECTOR BARBERA #8 / 15th 1'55.604 @HectorBarbera

I’m happy to be the first Open bike, but we had some problems and I think that, at the beginning, I could be slightly faster. The warm up session will be very important for the race tomorrow, but we have reached the first target, and this was to be the first Open today. Tomorrow we’ll try to repeat, but we need to improve a little bit more the race pace, I think we are in the right direction, but we still missing something. The race will be difficult because the level in this category is very high, but we have to do it.

MIKE DI MEGLIO #63 / 16th 1'55.729 @Mikejpp63

This was my first qualifying session with this bike, we tried to put more power, but it didn’t work as we expected. It was hard to open the throttle and the front wheel was on the air every time, but I think that I have to get more experience with a real MotoGP bike. We finished first and second in the Open class and I think that is great for the team. In the FP4 I tried the tyre I want to use on the race and the pace was quite good, but we have to wait and see tomorrow. Is the first race of the year and I’m really excited to see where we really are.


Abraham: We can fight for points

Karel Abraham has ended up on twentieth position in qualifying of Grand Prix of Qatar. Czech rider ended in tenth place in QP1 with time 1:55,897 losing 789 thousands to the fastest Danilo Petrucci.

Karel Abraham

„We managed to improve our lap time. But obviously I can´t be satisfied with our final result as we were faster during the test. We´re not suffering any significant problems, we have just to tune a few things, but today it didn't work out. Tomorrow we must focus on the start and on few first laps as we need to stay in contact with the leading group. I´m staying with another Honda riders and Stefan on Yamaha just behind satellite Ducati riders, who are very strong on straights. So it will be very hard to overtake them and stay in touch.”

Marco Grana, chief mechanic AB Motoracing

„Twentieth place is nothing we would be happy about. On the other hand it is good to see that we are losing just about 150 thousands to best fifteen. Unfortunately, Karel lost one fast lap because Jack Miller crashed in front of him. Then we have tried new tyre, but we did not ride one lap without any mistake and can´t improve our best. We were fighting to reach low 1:55, but we could not make it. During the last free practice session we tried to ride simulation of the race and results were positive – Karel was riding really good time at the beginning as well as at the end. So we can think about points.“


Dovizioso dazzles under lights to take pole position for MotoGP™ season opener

Round 1: Qatar MotoGP™ - Qualifying Practice

Losail International Circuit, Saturday 28 March 2015

Bridgestone slick compounds: Front: Soft, Medium & Hard; Rear: Soft, Medium (Asymmetric) & Hard (Symmetric)

Weather: FP4/QP - Dry. Ambient 22-24°C; Track 25-27°C (Bridgestone measurement)

Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso showed he will be a force to be reckoned with this season after the Italian set a stunning time of 1’54.113 during Qualifying Practice 2 to claim pole position for tomorrow’s Qatar Grand Prix.

Dovizioso’s pole-winning time was set on his second run in QP2 and saw him out-qualify Repsol Honda Team’s Dani Pedrosa, whose best time was a 1’54.330, to the top grid spot. Rounding out the front row was Marc Marquez on the other factory RC213V, the Spaniard securing third place on the grid with a time of 1’54.437. Both Pedrosa and Marquez set their best lap times using medium compound slicks front and rear, while Dovizioso stormed to pole using the soft compound rear in conjunction with the medium compound front slick.

Track conditions today were good and track temperatures peaked at 27°C during Free Practice 4, before dropping to a low of 25°C during QP2. It was during the thirty minute FP4 session that many riders did race simulations on their preferred tyre choice in preparation for tomorrow’s Grand Prix. The most popular tyre combination during the final free practice session was the medium compound rear paired with the hard compound front slick, although the medium compound front, and hard compound rear are also likely to figure on the grid for tomorrow’s race. In Qualifying Practice 1 and 2, the riders opted for the softest rear slick available to them; medium compound for the Factory Honda and Yamaha riders, and soft compound for the rest of the field.

The twenty minute MotoGP Warm Up session starts at 1700 local time tomorrow (GMT+3) before the twenty-two lap Qatar Grand Prix starts under the floodlights of the Losail International Circuit at 2100.

Shinji Aoki - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department

“The track conditions were once again favourable today and we saw some strong, consistent pace during the race simulations in FP4. The pace shown by the riders over a single lap in qualifying and during long runs has been the closest we have seen at Qatar for a long time, and I hope this results in an exciting race. The most popular tyre combination is the medium rear with the hard front slick, as this gives the riders the best drive out of corners and good braking stability. However, given that the hard rear slick seems more consistent over race distance, this option could be an attractive option for the race, while some riders prefer the feel and better warm-up performance of the medium front slick over the hard front. Given the quick pace we’ve seen so far this weekend, it is likely we will see a new race lap record for the Losail Circuit to be set tomorrow.”


Round Number: 
1
2015

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