Press releases from the teams after the first day of testing at Valencia:
Marquez and Pedrosa commence 2016 season in Valencia
With barely time for the dust to settle on the emphatic 2015 MotoGP season, today the 2016 season commenced in Valencia, Spain.
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa began this first day of testing aboard the 2015 RC213V machine, with the new specification 2016 Michelin tyres and HRC software. As the day progressed, they began to carry out a comparison between the 2015 bike fitted with the Magneti Marelli ECU and the new 2016 prototype machine equipped with the new Honda engine and same software.
It was a productive first day and Marc finished fastest with his time of 1’31.551 on lap 10 of 47. Dani was just 0.130 seconds off his teammate with 1’31.681 on lap 11 of 49, placing him third for the day.
Testing continues tomorrow at 10am local time.
"We went out on track and on the opening laps I lost the front. I realised that the Michelin tyres may have worked well for us in testing at Aragon, but they react differently on every type of asphalt. From that moment we started again, doing a run with the same bike we used during the weekend. Then we changed to the new software and we saw that there is definitely some work ahead for us. It's only the first day and we have to adjust many things. At the end of the day we tried the new engine together with the Magneti Marelli software, but in order to draw any conclusions we first have to finish setting up the electronics and when we have a good base, then we will be able to evaluate the engine properly."
"Today was a rather different day. We have done a lot of work, but it is also important to take things slowly. We had the new tyres, so at first we were careful with in order to progressively get a feel for them and understand their reaction with the asphalt at this track. Later on we tried the new Magneti Marelli electronics and the first feeling we have is that they are very much in the preliminary stage and certainly a step backwards. Right now the electronics are still giving us a lot of problems and are difficult to use. We have to work hard to understand it and see what parameters we should concentrate on more. It’s also a job for the rider, because you must gain experience in order to understand what you have and what you don’t, compared with the previous version."
2016 season gets underway for Ducati Team at Valencia. Dovizioso and Iannone on track at the Ricardo Tormo circuit for first day of IRTA test
Winter testing got underway for MotoGP today, just two days after the end of this year’s championship. The Ducati Team took to the Valencia track with its two factory riders, Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone, aboard the Desmosedici GP machines they had raced on Sunday in the final round of the season.
On this first day of testing, both Ducati men mainly worked with their engineers to adapt the chassis set-up of their bikes to the 17” tyres made available by the new one-make championship supplier Michelin, while continuing to use the “factory” software.
Andrea Iannone, who had an unfortunate crash at Turn 3 towards the end of the session, completed a total of 61 laps, setting a best time of 1’31.639 and ending the day in a positive second place behind Marquez. His team-mate Andrea Dovizioso did a total of 66 laps, the Italian clocking a quickest time of 1’32.073 to finish tenth in the overall standings.
Also present at today’s test was Michele Pirro, the Ducati Test Team test-rider who finished twelfth in Sunday’s race. The Italian went out for a few laps on Iannone’s Desmosedici GP and will also remain at the disposal of the squad tomorrow.
Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29): 1’31.639 (61 laps) – 2nd
“I think that today was a positive day, because we did a lot of laps and understood a lot of things, so it’s a good start. This is only the second time that I have tested the Michelin tyres and in the end I am quite satisfied because, even though we still have to work to optimize the details, I think that we have responded well to this important change. I’m sorry about the crash, but at the end of the session we made a modification that clearly did not work. Today the 2016 MotoGP season got underway and next year I expect to be up there fighting at the top with the best riders. I’m very confident and convinced I belong to a great group of guys.”
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04): 1’32.073 (66 laps) – 10th
“These testing days are very important because this time the change is a really big one. The Michelin tyres have very different characteristics and so we also have to adapt our riding style, because the corner approach and the lines cannot be the same as the ones we were used to. For sure there is still a lot of work to do to adjust and understand the direction to take for the future, but it’s important to start off well and up at the front, and in any case first sensations are positive.”
Yamaha Successfully Start Valencia Testing
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi were back in action today at Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana - Ricardo Tormo to get underway with the 2016 preparations and test the Michelin tyres, wrapping the day up in fifth and twelfth place respectively.
Valencia (Spain), 10th November 2015
Though the 2015 World Championship was decided only two days ago, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP‘s Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi returned to Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana - Ricardo Tormo today to test the 2016 YZR-M1 machines for next year‘s season.
The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team made full use of the first day of pre-season testing in Valencia to get to know the Michelin tyres better. Lorenzo and Rossi both went out on 2015 YZR-M1 first so the data derived from this year's bike could be used as a point of reference for when they switched to the 2016 machine later on.
Newly crowned triple MotoGP World Champion Lorenzo was the first of the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team-mates to enter the track nearly two hours into the session and focused on balancing the bike. Without the pressure to do a time attack, he gradually picked up the pace over a total of 41 laps. His best time of the day was a 1‘31.767s for fifth place, 0.216s off the front.
Rossi appeared on the scene not long after Lorenzo and followed the same approach to the session as his team-mate. After getting a feel for the new tyres on the 2015 bike, he moved on to the new edition. His pace steadily quickened towards the end of the day and after completing 57 laps in total, his best efforts of a 1'32.401s put him in twelfth place in today‘s testing results, 0.850s from the front.
5th JORGE LORENZO
1'31.767 / 41 LAPS
It is fantastic to ride around as the World Champion. It‘s an unbelievable feeling, I couldn‘t be happier. The situation during the whole championship and especially the last race couldn‘t have been more emotional, but I still have to test the Michelin tyres and I can‘t relax and enjoy it completely because I need the tension to not make a mistake and crash. We started the test with completely the same bike as the race, just with the Michelin tyres. At the beginning it was difficult to get good lap times, but by changing the setting of the bike little by little, we improved the feeling of the front quite a bit. We didn‘t solve the problem completely. I now have a feeling that I think everybody has; at the entry of the corner we lose a bit of stability and also when reaching the maximum lean with throttle the front can close suddenly if you push so much. It‘s the opposite for the rear tyre, it‘s fantastic! It‘s unbelievably grippy and it gives you a very good feeling. We need to work a bit more on the front.
12th VALENTINO ROSSI
1'32.401 / 57 LAPS
It‘s a big change and it will be interesting, especially the tyre will make a big difference for next year. A lot changed, especially the setting, the weight distribution of the bike and everything. It looks like our competitors are a little ahead, because they‘ve made more kilometres with the Michelin, but it‘s just the first day. I also tried the new electronics and also that, as I expected, was quite a big step because it‘s like going a little bit into the past. However, that too could be interesting and it‘s only the first day, we have a lot to work on. The rear tyre is very similar and Michelin is good, it has very good grip. The front is the big difference. We need to understand how much weight this tyre needs to turn at the maximum. We need some more time.
The 2015 season has barely ended, but today we already started our preparations for next year. The riders spent most of the time on the 2015 bikes, adjusting the setting to the Michelin tyres and getting a first impression. So far our riders are quite satisfied with the rear tyre that provides good grip. There is still some work to do to improve the feeling with the front. It was very important to let the riders do a few laps with the 2016 prototype bike before the end of the day. Tomorrow we will continue work where we left off.
2016 season preparation kicks off for Espargaro and Smith
Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Pol Espargaro launched into his testing programme today during the first day of track action after the Valencia GP as the 2016 season preparations got underway. The young Spanish rider focused on sampling the new Michelin tyres and then set about exploring setup options on his MotoGP bike. At the close of the day, his best time was just under three-tenths from third and left him in 7th as he now confidently looks forward to riding his updated 2015 Yamaha YZR-M1 for the first time tomorrow in the final day of track action this year.
Meanwhile, Bradley Smith continued the positive momentum from his impressive 2015 season where he finished 6th in the standings as he started to get to grips with the new Michelin tyres. Similarly to this teammate, the Briton took steps forward in modifying the base setup of his Yamaha YZR-M1 to suit the French tyre manufacturer. The 24 year old rider’s best time was just 0.060 back from his teammate and left him in 8th. He now aims to make further advances tomorrow after a tireless effort today.
Position : 7th Time : 1'37.937 Laps : 40
"All in all it has been quite a positive first day as the lap times of the whole field were competitive compared to this weekend’s times. Yet, there were a lot of crashes as we are all trying to adapt and we can’t expect everything to be perfect as soon as we start. However, I’m happy that we have another day of testing as we need to progress and try more options so that I will have a better feeling before we head into the winter break. I know that Michelin are working hard to improve the front tyre, which is the main issue at the moment, but I must also say that the rear compound is already really good. We have my new bike for 2016, which is the Factory Yamaha’s bike from this season that I will finally ride tomorrow and therefore, I’m fired up to close the test in a positive manner.”
Position : 8th Time : 1'37.997 Laps : 67
"Day one has been completed here in Valencia and I feel that we had a really productive time. It goes without saying that for everyone today, the circumstances were new as we were all using Michelin tyres. Yet, from the information that we already had from Malaysia and Aragon, we were in a better situation to start from. I began this morning with this year’s bike and we worked to find a base setting in order to try and explore the potential of the tyres as much as possible. For my final run, we sampled my 2016 bike which we will really start to work with tomorrow in order to understand it’s capabilities as five laps was just a small appetiser of what is to come. It’s very early stages but we can already see that we have a bike for next year with more potential as I ran similar lap times on both versions. I am confident in saying that we are heading in the right direction and we have a clear development plan that we want to continue to test. So, I am happy with the work from myself and also from the team and I look forward to getting back on track tomorrow.”
FIRST ‘TREADS’ WITH MICHELIN FOR ESPARGARO AND VIÑALES
Team Suzuki Press Office – November 10.
The 2016 season started today for MotoGP™ at Valencia in Spain as Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales took to the track for the opening session of the official tests.
The main change for Team SUZUKI ECSTAR and the other teams was the use of Michelin tyres - today marked a change in the Official Tyre Supplier - with the French brand coming back into MotoGP™.
Espargaro has already had the opportunity to test them during the year, but the new tyres were a ‘first’ for Viñales, who was impressed and very positive by their performance. Today’s work mainly focused on getting the riders’ first impressions about the new characteristics; and running their machines with the same set-ups from Sunday’s race.
Both the riders reported a positive feeling; not only the GSX-RRs will have to be adjusted, but also the riding style will need modifications, as the reported feeling from both riders is that the grip has improved on the rear, while the front still needs further improvements.
Team SUZUKI ECSTAR’s positive feeling is backed-up by the positive results in terms of lap times: Viñales scored a personal best at 1:31.720, which set him in the fourth place of the classification, only 0.168 from the leader. Espargaro was well in the top-10 also, with a personal best of 1:32.005 that put him in ninth place, less than half-a-second from the leader.
Team SUZUKI ECSTAR was joined at Valencia by SMC test team riders Nobuatsu Aoki and Takuya Tsuda. The two Japanese are supporting the Factory riders in the development of the set-up for the new tyres but they are also testing the new unified software that will be introduced next year.
According to the team’s plan, Espargaro and Viñales are focusing only on tyres and will start testing the new software later, hopefully in a private test that will take place in Sepang, Malaysia on November 23rd and 24th.
Best lap: 1:31.720
“Today we have focused mainly in finding the feeling with the new tyres and my judgement so far is very positive and I feel comfortable with them. I could have been more effective in the braking as the rear is so stable, allowing me to be effective in the entrance of the corner and also in corner-speed. The character of these tyres is different from the previous ones, we need to better-understand how they react and the crash I had today is proof of this: I suddenly lost the front without any warning; my feeling is that they have much-more grip at the rear but still some uncertainty about the front. This will affect my riding style because I will probably have to load the front more to keep it more stable.
“In the afternoon we started to introduce some little adaptations in the set-up and the electronics to see the reactions and to prepare tomorrow’s job. But I think we can be satisfied with today, we did a good job with a good fast lap-time, but also the consistency is very good, when the tyres get worn I still feel I can trust them.”
Best lap: 1:32.005
“This day has been a little strange because it’s the very first time in my career that I have crashed twice in the same day. Of course, new tyres mean a lot of work to adapt the riding style because their behaviour is pretty peculiar; now we have a very good performing rear-end and a front that still needs improvements. In fact, the two crashes I had were due to a sudden lack of grip at the front.
“For sure, the riding style has to change; I need to push more in the front and to take advantage of the positives of these new Michelins. To have much-more grip at the rear means that I can take the bike up immediately at mid-corner and open the throttle earlier. Of course we need to also change the machine’s set-up; so far we focused to get our impressions of the tyres without major improvements in the bike, so we will now start to change the machine.”