Valencia : Konica Minolta Honda - Preview
This week end, the Valencia circuit will host one of the most important events of the season.
The protagonists of the riveting 2006 MotoGP World Championship will hardly fight in the last race on the calendar defining the
winner of the World Title of the 250cc and MotoGP categories. The challenge is not over yet and a very exciting final race is expected.
This year's edition of the “Gran Premio de la Comunitat Valenciana” will be surely remembered as the last MotoGP competition with 990cc engines which, after five years, will be replaced by the 800cc engines, from 2007.
The “Ricardo Tormo” – the modern circuit of Valencia – seems a giant theatre. It was completed in 1999 and presents a particular lay-out, studied for the public, which allows the crowds in the stands to see practically the entire circuit. The 4, 05 kilometres track is tight and twisty; for its technical characteristics and the mild temperatures, ensured by its proximity to the sea, it is often use for F1 tests.
On this circuit, Makoto Tamada obtained his best result in the 2004 season when he set the pole position and finished the race in fifth place. This week end the Japanese rider will perform his last race for the Konica Minolta Honda Team.
Gianluca Montiron – Konica Minolta Honda General Director: "The 2006 World Championship was hard-fought and fantastic; it was a brilliant show for the spectators and, especially, for our sport. I am sure the final round in Valencia will reserve us great emotions.
Makoto and the Team will give the best in this last race of the Championship which, for us, also represents the last race with Makoto. After four seasons, he will leave our Team at the end of the season. For this, since the first Friday's practice sessions, we will try to find our Honda RC211V ideal setting which will permit us to express our potential at the top. We know we did the most throughout the season and now we want to close it at our best."
Makoto Tamada: "Racing in Spain is always special for the passion transmitted by the fans. The track is not difficult but it is fun. On Sunday's race, I'll try to be a protagonist and obtain a good result to thank the Team for the job done during these four years in MotoGP. I'll do my best from the star in order to obtain a good position in the starting grid."
Giulio Bernardelle – Konica Minolta Honda Technical Director: "The Valencia track can not be considered among the most complex technical circuits and it does not allow the riders to emerge clearly exploiting their riding skills This anticlockwise circuits starts with a straight approximately 800 meters long. The first left corner, the MotoGP bikes face in third gear, is one of the fastest. A medium-slow part starts here. It is characterized by a series of first or second gear corners alternated with some short tracts where the MotoGP power must be held down. The most beautiful and difficult part of the circuit is the last sector: riders must approach a fast right-left “S” and then start a long corner bringing to the final straight riders enter in first or second gear."
Konica Minolta Honda