2012 Sepang 2 MotoGP Test Day 3 Times: Hondas Top Timesheets As Dovizioso Leads Yamaha Charge

Casey Stoner leaves Sepang once more on top of the timesheets, after a brief hiatus on Wednesday. The Australian leads a Repsol Honda one-two, with teammate Dani Pedrosa just under two tenths behind, the Spaniard followed by a veritable Armada of Yamahas. Monster Tech 3 Yamaha Andrea Dovizioso was the fastest of the Yamahas on the satellite machine, just sneaking ahead of Jorge Lorenzo on the factory bike, though Lorenzo spent his day working on a race simulation (completed at an impressively constant and rapid pace) rather than chasing a fast time. Dovizioso's teammate Cal Crutchlow posted the 5th fastest time, ending the day just a tenth of a second slower than 2010 World Champion Lorenzo.

Hector Barbera was the fastest Ducati on the Pramac satellite machine, ending the test three quarters of a second behind Stoner, and just pipping his compatriot Alvaro Bautista on the satellite San Carlo Gresini Honda. Ben Spies was the last of the Yamaha riders, but Spies ended the day early, deciding against chasing a fast lap at the end of the day. LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl set the 9th fastest time, just over a second slower than Stoner on the factory bike, while the factory Ducatis of Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden ended the test in 10th and 11th, some 1.1 seconds slower than fastest man Stoner. Colin Edwards closed the gap for the CRT bikes, cutting the deficit to Stoner to just 3.2 seconds on his NGM Forward Suter BMW, while the Avintia teammates Yonny Hernandez and Ivan Silva continued to struggle on the FTR Kawasakis. Both men are 2 seconds inside the 107% qualifying limit, however, though at 6 seconds, the gap is still large.

With testing over, the paddock now heads home, to work on the data gathered ahead of the IRTA test at Jerez, where all of the MotoGP machines - prototypes and CRT machines alike - will gather on March 23rd. That three-day test will be the final opportunity to try out new parts before the season kicks off at Qatar.

Results, courtesy of MotoGP.com:

Pos Rider Bike Time Diff Previous Laps
1 Casey Stoner Honda 2:00.473     34
2 Dani Pedrosa Honda 2:00.648 0.175 0.175 40
3 Andrea Dovizioso Yamaha 2:00.802 0.329 0.154 54
4 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 2:00.877 0.404 0.075 51
5 Cal Crutchlow Yamaha 2:00.986 0.513 0.109 54
6 Hector Barbera Ducati GP0 2:01.231 0.758 0.245 66
7 Alvaro Bautista Honda 2:01.275 0.802 0.044 51
8 Ben Spies Yamaha 2:01.432 0.959 0.157 28
9 Stefan Bradl Honda 2:01.492 1.019 0.060 54
10 Valentino Rossi Ducati GP12 2:01.550 1.077 0.058 57
11 Nicky Hayden Ducati GP12 2:01.609 1.136 0.059 44
12 Franco Battaini Ducati Test 2:03.490 3.017 1.881 39
13 Colin Edwards Suter BMW 2:03.681 3.208 0.191 43
14 Yonny Hernandez FTR Kawasaki 2:06.632 6.159 2.951 48
15 Ivan Silva FTR Kawasaki 2:06.785 6.312 0.153 53

 

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Comments

Will be the key, Jorge was very smart in his approach today, poor old Vale. I hope they can find a second somewhere...

Star of the test for me, just from Barbera.

Fuel strategy? I don't know. I would imagine the MSMA stuck with 21 litres because they felt they could achieve it on an 81mm bore.

He said in his interview that he was happy with the progress, and they decided not to push for a quick lap after the crash because he tweaked his neck a bit.

*Edit: I'm a new commenter, I think I responded to the wrong comment. whoops.

Is there a valid reason for Ben packing it in early and only completing 28 laps when the busiest riders worked to the end and covered twice the mileage? Considering both Sepang tests have been weather affected, and he's been outpaced by the Tech3 bikes..it strikes me as very odd!

what..by an Aussie? Get outta here.. 8=>

A bit of soreness from the off is a plausible thought though.

Hmm after these results I have some questions:

Will valentino ride for ducati after his contract ends this year?

Is CRT Ducatis saving grace or rather every other manufacture other than Honda who is killing the field at this point?

Will anyone want to ride the factory ducati even after the goat himself had trouble on this thing? ( Or even hayden who has a history in dirt tracking like Casey still couldn't ride the bike )

I know the 2012 season is still a baby at this point but if you feel you can answer these maybe I should be asking:

Will the world end this year? :)

If Suzuki comes back next year it would be a great time to snag a good team and rider (Vale/JB) and have some ok results. I really doubt Vale will stay if they do not significantly improve. My biggest worry is that at that point I think it could be the end of Ducati in MotoGP.

why would Ducati want to stick around?

Ducati manufactures and sells v-twins. The only justification I could see for staying in the "new" MotoGP class would be if they changed their focus to v-4 street bikes. Pretty unlikely.

The whole point of the CRT concept if it intends to be the entire grid as is to remove the manufacturers from the sport. To me it is a bit shortsighted as it is the manufacturers who bring the most money and resources to the table. You may get slower, closer racing, just like the AMA accomplished with its manufacturer purge, but now it is barely distinguishable from club racing.

Will Repsol or Marlboro pay the same sponsorship fees to a non-manufacturer associated team? Who will pay JL and BS salaries if Yamaha factory does not directly participate? Will they still help Tech3?

I hope Ezpeleta is just rattling his saber with talk of an all CRT grid as it would be a huge step in making GP completely irrelevant.

Chris
moto2-usa.blogspot.com

The harsh reality is..nobody has got any money.

Stalwart sponsors such as the above mentioned are looking to save and without CRT would surely question backing a 12 bike series that has very little to do with 'racing' and a bona-fide premier world championship but is more a showcase for just three manufacturers and the technology they state is so important. Which they seek to ram down the throats of the bike buying public, at significantly increased cost.

What is the relevance to me?..of 21 litres and all the gadgetry needed to make that fuel last race distance?

I don't ride a bike to be told what to do by a computer that takes it cue from a battery of sensors. If I cared so much about safety, I'd take the bus. When I tap the throttle open and hit reserve 40 miles earlier than a sensible economy ride out, it doesn't bother me because I go and fill up.

The manufactures had their chance to take care of the sport but chose to look after themselves. They put their precious engineering principles before everything else and have effectively told racing fans to take a hike. Carmelo needed to reign them in and if they decide MotoGP is no longer the R&D test-bed they spuriously claim is so important, then fine..Sayonara, there'll be no tears from this corner.

The machine is more important than the man and to me that's arse about face. You may be happy to see a faster lap indiscernible to the naked eye and be satisfied with processional big gap parades but it doesn't make for riveting entertainment and it won't bring home the bacon.
Engineers have been in charge of this game for too long.

http://www.grandprix.com/columns/maurice-hamilton/a-busted-hush.html

My comment was pretty much about the folly of chasing out the people that are willing to spend large sums instead of working with them for a better solution. An all CRT grid by definition prohibits manufacturer involvement and therefore removes most of the money from the sport. You want to remove most of the money from the sport then complain that people can't afford things. We already see that 2 or 3 CRT riders are already in questionable financial positions so how is CRT solving the cash flow problem? Maybe its not due to the bikes but to the worldwide recession. And the fact that our Spanish-focused sport is sensitive to Spain's worse-than-average economy.

>>I don't ride a bike to be told what to do by a computer that takes it cue from a battery of sensors.

So its carbs and points for you then?

>>When I tap the throttle open and hit reserve 40 miles earlier than a sensible economy ride out, it doesn't bother me because I go and fill up.

That's an easy out for you but for manufacturers that face government imposed mileage and emissions requirements for production vehicles it does not fly.

>>The manufactures had their chance to take care of the sport but chose to look after themselves. They put their precious engineering principles before everything else and have effectively told racing fans to take a hike. Carmelo needed to reign them in....

Funny, you'd think that Carmelo didn't have veto power over anything the MSMA proposes. He does, unanimous vote or not. And still, I don't recall him voting against anything the MSMA proposed.

>The machine is more important than the man and to me that's arse about face.

Well, you're wrong. Stoner won with the 'worst' bike, now he is winning with the 'best' bike. The rider made all the difference. Without a competitive machine most riders will not win and a non-competitive rider on a competitive machine won't win period. A rider without a bike is just an overdressed jogger and a bike without a rider is just parked. Why is this so hard to accept? With a sport that requires machinery to compete in, the machinery is an important part of the competition. That's just common sense.

Chris
moto2-usa.blogspot.com

Under the contract signed between the MSMA and Dorna between 2002 and 2011, the MSMA had the right to propose technical regulations, and Dorna, IRTA and the FIM were forced to accept their proposals. Since January 1st 2012, that contract has expired, and as far as I know, no new contract has been made, other than commercial contracts between the individual factories and Dorna. The MSMA no longer has the monopoly on technical regulations that it had until December 31st 2011.

You've written several times about the Dorna CEO and FIM president having veto power over any proposal, unanimous MSMA vote or not. Yes, the MSMA made tech regulations but that does not say that Dorna or the FIM had to vote for them. Going on the record by voting (even fruitlessly) against their proposals would have gone a long way in giving him credibility for his new proposals.

My short experience with Dorna in trying to find out the what and why of new Moto2 rules does not give me any sympathy for them.

Chris
moto2-usa.blogspot.com

won the manufacturers championship in 2007 Chris which suggests it was far from the worst bike on the grid and if it was all down to Casey, why did his results go backwards for the following three years as he gained experience and become a better rider?

There's very little to debate..you have your opinion, which I suggest is the engineers viewpoint. I have mine, from a fans perspective let's say.

I don't want to see the bikes in MotoGP become slower than production bikes either, so maybe the FIM should look at imposing stricter technical regs on Superbike, preferably across the board so all domestic series run the same bikes as the world championship. Wildcards and Transatlantic type races would hopefully then follow..we might even get some racing during the off season in warmer climes.

I do think the bikes in GP are too expensive and play a bigger part in who wins than who is riding them and I know you'll say that's the way it's always been, missing the point.
I think the riders' skill has been sacrificed in the technical arms race and mechanical set-up is secondary to electronic set-up.

IMO It takes away the passion and leaves me cold Bud..

I'm afraid you've cherry-picked that fit with your opinion, without checking its validity. Manufacturers points tally is not a tally of all finishers, or even first x-number of finishers, for a brand.
It is based solely on the points of the highest placed rider of the brand. In 07 Ducati won the manufacturers championship with 394 points. All but (fittingly) 27 of those points were scored by Stoner.
Ducati scored manufacturers points by riders other than Stoner 3 times;
1. Mugello - when Barros beat Stoner to 3rd place (and satellite bikes have been dumbed down ever since)
2. Sachsenring - Stoner had tyre problems and Capirossi had his best ride of the year to finish 2nd behind Pedrosa, Stoner 5th.
3. Motegi - Capirossi won in a lottery of a stop-and-go wet race, where Stoner only needed a finish to clinch the title and duly did so.

So yes Ducati's manufacturers title in 07 was indeed basically all down to Stoner. His declining championship positions since then have been discussed ad infinitum, but he was almost always in amongst the leaders and challenging for the win.

»So yes Ducati's manufacturers title in 07 was indeed basically all down to Stoner. His declining championship positions since then have been discussed ad infinitum, but he was almost always in amongst the leaders and challenging for the win.«

I fully agree with the last sentence on the quote but I'll have to disagree with the "all down to" in reference to the 2007 title.
The circumstances in the 2007 season favored a really superb rider (already proved more than once), in what was a very strange first year in a revamped class (first year of 800cc).

You're forgetting that the Desmosedici GP07 was, pretty much, the bike that made urgent for the other manufacturers to adopt pneumatic valves, as they simply couldn't keep up with the desmo config.engine, for its superior power and the top speeds the Ducs were achieving (of even the satellite teams), many times in excess of a +10kph advantage.
Not to mention the impecable tailor-made Bridgestone tyres on the factory Ducatis that year, in a bad momentum of Michelin (which the top Jap. factory bikes were using then).

that Stoner scored the vast majority of the points that decided the Manufacturers championship for Ducati that year. Thus, Ducati winning the manufacturers chamionship could not be used to suggest that ducati was a superior bike, as Wosi had done.

By the way, I made a mistake with the numbers above, Stoner scored all but 61 of the points, not 27 (that was the difference between his total and Ducati's total).

Ducati Manufacturers points total 394
Ducati Manufacturers points scored by Stoner 333 (84.5%)
Ducati Manufacturers points scored by Capirossi 45 (11.4%)
Ducati Manufacturers points scored by Barros 16 (4.1%)

Ducati Manufacturers points excluding Stoner from all results - 213 (Capirossi 145, Barros 57, Hofman 11). Would have placed Ducati 3rd behind H and Y, but ahead of S and K (but if Stoner was included riding another brand, even S or K, it would of course have been different).

So, my point is simply that the Manufacturers Title 2007 was more about one rider (about 84.5% hehe) than the strength of the bike in general.

The strength (and weaknesses) of the 07 Duc has been discussed at length, they started the year with a much more agressive fuel strategy, finishing nigh on empty while others had a litre or more left. Within just a few rounds Yamaha had reduced the gap significantly (see Rd4 China). But you make a good point in that the desmo in combination with the fuel limits did bring into play the requirement for pneumatic valves.