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Final Pre-Season Test Gets Underway at Qatar

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Yamaha Factory Racing riders Ben Spies and Jorge Lorenzo made an impressive start to the last of the winter MotoGP tests under the floodlights of the Losail circuit in Qatar tonight. Both riders spent the session working on chassis set up and electronics for the upcoming season opening race this coming weekend.

The session got underway at 1800 local time as the light faded and the floodlights came up, Lorenzo the first to take to the track. By mid-session 2010 Rookie of the Year Spies had climbed to fastest rider, team mate and reigning World Champion Lorenzo was just 0.495 seconds behind in third. Spies ended the session in fourth position just 0.292 seconds from the front of the pack. Lorenzo completed an impressive 60 laps over the session, working corner by corner to improve stability and also taking time for an extended run. The Mallorcan wrappe d up today in fifth, 0.411 seconds from the front.

Ben Spies, Yamaha Factory Racing Rider, 4th, 1′56.563 (38 laps)
“We made the bike go in a pretty good direction today and hopefully we can get a little bit more out of it. We want to try another tyre tomorrow that we haven’t used yet, all in all it’s been a good first session. The bike seems to be closer to the front than Malaysia and I’ve got pretty good expectations after the first day. The track is a lot more flowing here which suits our bike well; I think this should be a good track for us.”

Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha Factory Racing Rider, 5th, 1′56.682 (60 laps)
“We tried a few different things on some corners today to try to make the bike more stable when I open the throttle; in almost all the gears we have done a good job. It seems we are closer to the Honda guys than in Sepang so I’m happy. We are going to continue and try a few different things tomorrow to try and find some more grip as well.”

Wilco Zeelenberg, Yamaha Factory Racing Team Manager
“Our first test day and I’m satisfied with the results. Jorge did 60 laps and made the difference much smaller than Sepang. As we suspected when the temperatures are a bit colder we get a benefit. We did a small long run and the pace was good, a little bit slower than last year’s race pace so the track needs to be a bit cleaner. We confirmed everything we needed to test so everything is under control so far.”

Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha Factory Racing Team Director
“A good day, we tested two different set ups with Ben, both of which were working quite well. We will re-confirm them tomorrow then start with some other items. As a starting day as a team we can be satisfied, everything has worked well and smoothly on both sides of the garage.”


Day One Results -
1. Dani Pedrosa ESP Repsol Honda Team 1m 56.271s (41)
2. Casey Stoner AUS Repsol Honda Team 1m 56.414s (32)
3. Hiroshi Aoyama JPN San Carlo Honda Gresini 1m 56.444s (59)
4. Ben Spies USA Yamaha Factory Racing 1m 56.563s (38)
5. Jorge Lorenzo ESP Yamaha Factory Racing 1m 56.682s (60)
6. Colin Edwards USA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1m 56.742s (42)
7. Andrea Dovizioso ITA Repsol Honda Team 1m 56.780s (56)
8. Valentino Rossi ITA Ducati Marlboro Team 1m 57.038s (57)
9. Nicky Hayden USA Ducati Marlboro Team 1m 57.137s (57)
10. Randy de Puniet FRA Pramac Racing Team 1m 57.143s (39)
11. Marco Simoncelli ITA San Carlo Honda Gresini 1m 57.226s (57)
12. Alvaro Bautista ESP Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 1m 57.302s (61)
13. Hector Barbera ESP Mapfre Aspar Team 1m 57.325s (69)
14. Loris Capirossi ITA Pramac Racing Team 1m 57.437s (56)
15. Karel Ab raham CZE Cardion AB Motoracing 1m 57.499s (49)
16. Cal Crutchlow GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1m 57.737s (51)
17. Toni Elias ESP LCR Honda MotoGP 1m 58.250s (65)

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