Mugello : Fiat Yamaha - Day 1
After a wet race in France, Fiat Yamaha Team riders Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards had slightly better hopes for the weather in Italy this weekend but torrential rain throughout this afternoon put paid to that and the riders once again found
themselves splashing around a soaking track doing their best to stay upright.
Unfortunately this was a task Rossi could not quite manage today and the Italian slid off in the last seconds of the session when on his way to setting what looked like being the fastest lap of the afternoon, luckily emerging from the gravel trap unhurt.
As a result of this afternoon's downpour the fastest times of the day were set in this morning's dry Free Practice, when Rossi was second fastest behind Dani Pedrosa. The home-favourite was pleased with the initial performance of his Yamaha and is confident of making further improvements tomorrow as he works towards a record sixth consecutive home-race victory on Sunday.
Edwards meanwhile ran into a few unexpected issues this morning and could only manage 16th in the dry, although a solid performance in the wet saw him finish the second session seventh fastest. Despite the problems this morning he and his team are clear about the next step and the Texan is planning a dramatic improvement in the dry tomorrow before he bids to put his M1 on the front row for the fifth time this season.
Valentino Rossi : "This weather isn't really what we expect in Mugello! I'm quite happy today however because this morning in the dry I was already fast, setting some good lap times and finishing second. We still need to improve the setting a little bit but I think we're going in the right way. We tried some new tyres that we found during the Le Mans test and they weren't so bad, so hopefully we can improve things more tomorrow. I'm happy about this afternoon's session in the wet too because I was also very fast! I think if I hadn't crashed it would have been possible to have finished on top, so I'm sorry about that.
It was my mistake! I arrived a little bit too fast at the braking and went down but I was lucky; I didn't hurt myself and the bike is not so bad. Anyway it was a good session because now we understand that we can fight with our tyre rivals also in the wet, if we choose the right tyre. Now let's hope for some sunshine tomorrow!"
Colin Edwards : "We found something new with Michelin during the Le Mans test which we thought would work here and we basically dedicated the entire morning to it, but unfortunately it didn't work quite how we were hoping! In a way it was lucky for us that it rained this afternoon because it meant that we didn't have to start digging into our dry tyre allocation and we won't be in too much trouble tomorrow. We know what we've got to do so I think we'll be okay. This afternoon was quite simply unbelievable, especially when I first went out. I was hydroplaning at 180mph coming over the top of the hill down the main straight which was quite scary! Anyway it was useful, especially after the problems we had in Le Mans and it gave us the chance to check the rain setting of the bike and try to work on a few issues. I think we made some improvements and now we just need to keep on working in that way each time we get a chance in the wet."
Davide Brivio - Team Director : "Unfortunately the rain this afternoon called a halt to the work we had started this morning, but we can't do anything about that! Valentino was quite fast this morning and he made a good start, although we still have some more work to do on the setting and tyres. With Colin we really needed more time this afternoon to check the bike and tyres after things didn't go exactly to plan this morning, but we should be able to improve things tomorrow. Today was meant to be the worst day for the weather so hopefully it will get better from now on and tomorrow will be more like the Mugello we know!"
Fiat Yamaha Team