MotoGP : Jerez MotoGP Official test
Marco Melandri continued his impressive pre-season form aboard the Gresini Honda RC212V setting fastest lap time for the second consecutive day at the final MotoGP test before the season opens at Doha, Qatar on March.
sunny weather, with much improved track conditions, Italian Melandri slashed over two seconds off his best time of yesterday ending the session ahead of former MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi with Repsol Honda factory rider Dani Pedrosa third.
Time sheet topper Melandri set consistently fast lap times all ay as he worked his way through a strenuous Bridgestone tyre test in preparation for the race here on March 25. Once he had found a good base line set up for race tyres Marco put in a set of Bridgestone qualifying tyres to record his fastest lap of the day at 1m 40.383s.
Melandri had a low side crash at themed afternoon point but escaped with just a bruised arm. The RC212V was not so lucky sustaining serious damage that the mechanics worked hard to have the RC212V ready for the 40 minute timed ‘Shoot out' that will determine which MotoGP wins the sports car on offer for fastest lap.
Dani Pedrosa was again close to top spot on the time sheets. The Spaniard, a former three-time world champion in the smaller capacity classes, worked mainly on chassis settings before moving on to testing rear tyres for Michelin
Despite only taking to the track at around 13.00. MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden put in 91 hard laps of the 4.423 km Jerez track ending the day as the most improved lap time of all on the grid. The Champion's day was even better than the times indicate and he set his lap times on race tyres in preparation or the GP in one months time.
Toni Elias, Gresini Honda, was in scintillating form all day while testing the range of Bridgestone tyres designed to help him get the best out of his RCV. Testing the tyres in combination with a variety of front and rear suspension settings Elias' best lap was 2.7s faster than his best of yesterday.
Carlos Checa, LCR Honda, spent his day chasing the base set up so important for the grand prix at Jerez on March 25. The Spaniard and his technicians worked hard while chasing a better overall balance on the RC212V. Once satisfied with the base set up Checa moved on to tyre testing.
Shinya Nakano decided to run with only race settings and tyres and not try for a quick lap on qualifiers. For the Konica Minolta Honda team it was much more important to try race tyres and settings that will be relevant to the grand prix at Jerez in a month's time than go for that one quick lap. The team also worked on the suspension settings as they worked their way through a range of Michelin tyres. Despite improving his lap time by over two seconds Nakano was disappointed to end the day in 12th position.
The KR212V in the hands of Kenny Roberts Jnr made considerable progress today. Riding the Honda powered Team Roberts rolling chassis Roberts was able to lower his lap time of yesterday by the huge margin of four seconds. This, in part, due to the team technicians overcoming the difficulties caused by the damaged in transit triple clamp problems of yesterday. The team concentrated the day on improving front-end grip.
Official test Jerez – MotoGP – Day 2 – Official times :
1. Marco Melandri (Honda) 1.40.383
2. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 1.40.408
3. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1'40.581
4. Alex Hofmann (Ducati) 1'40.748
5. Toni Elias ( Honda) 1.40.952
6. Casey Stoner (Ducati) 1.41.071
7. Carlos Checa ( Honda) 1.41.096
8. Randy De Puniet (Kawasaki) 1.41.151
9. Colin Edwards (Yamaha) 1.41.204
10. Makoto Tamada (Yamaha) 1.41.234
11. Nicky Hayden (Honda) 1.41.259
12. Shinya Nakano (Honda) 1.41.269
13. Chris Vermeulen (Suzuki) 1.41.363
14. Loris Capirossi (Ducati) 1.41.590
15. Oliver Jacque (Kawasaki) 1.41.777
16. Kenny Roberts ( KR - Honda) 1'41.783
17. Alex Barros ( Ducati) 1.41.845
18. Sylvain Guintoli (Yamaha) 1.42.364
19. Shinichi Ito (Ducati) 1.43.209
20. Kousuke Akiyoshi (Suzuki) 1.43.610
21. Vittoriano Guareschi (Ducati) 1.44.143
22. Jeremy McWilliams (Ilmor) 1.44.458
23. Andrew Pitt (Ilmor) 1'44.589
Honda Motor Sport