News 6 Feb 2010

MotoGP: Stoner second, Ducati riders in top 10 at Sepang

The second and final day of MotoGP testing at Sepang was affected by mixed weather conditions, with rain in the morning making way for sun in the afternoon. However, several riders chose to take to the track from 9am, including Nicky Hayden who was the fastest on the wet track. Others, like Casey Stoner, preferred to wait until around 1pm, by which time the track had completely dried until another heavy downpour on the strike of 5pm that saw the session extended until 6pm.

Casey Stoner, second fastest overall, was satisfied with the set-up work done with the new bike over the two days in Malaysia and with his physical condition, following what was a very demanding session due to the intense heat and humidity. Hayden, eighth fastest, would have been happier if it hadn’t started to rain just as he was preparing to fit new slick tyres but he was pleased to have at least improved on his best time from yesterday and to have set a consistent pace.

Casey Stoner (Ducati Marlboro Team) 2nd fastest, 2’01.320 (44 laps)
“We are quite happy with the test. Today didn’t start really well because of the rain and the wet track, which set us back a few hours, but when it finally did dry out we were able to make some progress. We have definitely improved the set-up of the bike, trying some different things with the swingarm. The lap times are still not where we want them to be and we have to work on taking another couple of tenths off on hard tyres, but to be consistently doing 2’01.9 or 2’02.0 laps is a decent pace. Considering that we are using a different engine to the one we’ve had for the last three years and some other new parts that we still need to get the best out of we certainly can’t be unhappy with where we’re at. There is work to do but we have two more test sessions before the season starts for real. In general I am really pleased with how it’s gone.”

Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro Team) 8th fastest, 2’02.493 (64 laps)
“I am satisfied but I could be happier. These past two days have flown by and the weather hasn’t helped us to make the most of the track time available. Anyway, this morning we got the chance to find a wet setting for the new forks and engine. When we went out in the dry I could feel an instant improvement on yesterday and I set a decent pace but then we didn’t improve further. I would have liked to post a better lap time but just when we put some new tyres in the rain came back. However, it was a very positive test and I can’t wait to get back to work at the next one in a couple of weeks’ time.”

Second day of testing has concluded for the Pramac Racing Team on the Sepang circuit, Malaysia. Riders Aleix Espargarò and Mika Kallio have chosen different methods of work and this has reflected on the final result. The Catalan rider, Espargarò, was concentrated in finding the best feeling with the Ducati Sat to significantly improve yesterday best lap times concluding with the ninth best time of this first 2010 winter test. His teammate, Kallio, concentrated on modifying its bike but things didn’t go too well and he couldn’t manage to improve and concluded in seventeenth position. The Pramac Racing duo will return on track on February 25th in Sepang.

Aleix Espargarò – Pramac Racing rider

“Yesterday we have tried to find a constant pace while today we focused looking for the fast lap. It wasn’t so bad; on the contrary, I am really pleased on how things have gone. This is only my first winter test in MotoGP and I can only improve in the future. The arm on which I had surgery on this past winter doesn’t hurt anymore and my physical condition, notwithstanding the heat of these days, seems to be in good conditions. I look forward to come back on track at the end of the month here in Malaysia.”

Mika Kallio – Pramac Racing rider

“Likely this was just a winter test. We tried many changes on the bike set up, but we had some difficulties to improve the situation and for this reason we lost a lot of time working on our bikes in the garage. We will have to give our best in the next test so that things can change. We are too far from the firsts and our goal is to remain consistently between top 10 riders in every single session.”