Donington : Ducati – Day One
Ducati Marlboro Team rider Casey Stoner ended a soaking first day of practice here with the fastest lap time, the World Championship leader in superb form despite a treacherously slippery track surface.
Team-mate Loris Capirossi had a
harder time in the difficult conditions but is confident he will do better tomorrow after a more promising afternoon session.
Rain fell on and off throughout the day, Stoner riding his fastest lap at the end of the morning session. Capirossi rode his best lap at the end of the afternoon outing.
CASEY STONER, fastest, 1m 43749s
"I think everyone is running pretty much the softest wets. I used the same tyres for the whole day today and they still looked pretty new. It's ridiculous really, I don't think any other British track is this bad in the wet, and to have a world championship race here with bikes doing these speeds is just a little bit wrong. Since they resurfaced the track it's got worse than what it was before in the wet, it's become dangerous. For tomorrow we're going to see if we can make the tyres work a bit harder and hopefully pick up a few tenths. We'd already made a few improvements for the wet at Mugello - we changed something in the geometry to help me get more weight transfer on the rear, that's why we were pretty fast and confident in the wet there. It doesn't really matter if it's wet or dry on Sunday, we've all got to race in the same conditions. But the way this circuit is at the moment, I think a dry race would be a better option for everyone."
LORIS CAPIROSSI, 14th fastest, 1m 46.811s
"This morning was really bad.
We had some trouble with the engine set-up and we've not been able to find the right settings. This afternoon we started with a different electronics set-up and although it was a bit better it's still not right. I can't ride well because the bike feels too aggressive, so we need to analyse the data and understand why. We don't have so many of the rain tyres we want to use here, so I used the same front and rear for both sessions. They aren't perfect but they are pretty good and their endurance is beyond doubt, given that I used the same tyres for the whole day! Joking apart, I was really worried this morning but now I'm feeling better, even if I'm not totally happy yet. The track conditions are the same as usual when it rains here - slippery, with a lot of water onto the track, but still manageable because it didn't rain too hard."