Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi ended the second night of preseason testing in Qatar in fourth and fifth place respectively.
Lorenzo recorded a 1’55.500s lap early on in proceedings to slot into second place in the standings. He spent the remaining time of the session concentrating on a race set-up and finished the day in fourth place, +0.593s from the front.
Teammate Rossi continued working on the technical setup of his YZR-M1 and posted a 1’55.983s lap. As the day progressed so did his feeling with the bike and he was able to improve his time to 1’55.581s and take fifth position in the standings, +0.674s from the front, directly behind his teammate.
Jorge Lorenzo: “It was another difficult day. The conditions of the track improved not a lot, but a little bit. Even though we improved the feeling with the bike a little, we are still far from the fastest time. We tried many things, but everyone else made a bigger step in their work, so let’s see what happens tomorrow. We’ve found something important and we’ll also do a long-distance run to see how the bike works.”
Valentino Rossi: “It was a difficult day for me, because we tried to work a lot on the setting of the bike to improve and to be faster, but we didn’t get the improvement we expected. I was in a difficult situation, but fortunately in the last hour we modified something. We did a step back and went a different way. The last part of the test was good, because I was fast with both the hard and the soft tyre and I was able to improve my position so I’m in the top five, but especially I was able to improve my pace and stay in the 1’55’s so at the end it was not so bad. We have to continue working for tomorrow and try to fix as much as possible for the weekend of the race. We have some other things to try; some different parts, settings and we have to decide on the tyres. It looks like today was hard work, a lot of laps, a lot of effort, but at the end it was a good day. We did good work and we found something good at the end.”
Massimo Meregalli – Team Director: “It has been a very busy day today for the team and the riders. On Jorge’s side they focused on electronic adjustments and settings and on Vale’s side they focused on mechanical settings. It’s definitely been a better day than yesterday. Jorge’s crew made an important learning that they need to test on a long run and in Vale’s last run he was able to get back some extra feeling and confidence and was able to provide some extra info that will help us to find more solutions. We still have some work to do to find half a second to close the gap but we are making progress in the right direction and have both riders further up the timesheet’s. We are confident that for tomorrow’s session when there is more rubber on the tarmac we will be able to close the gap even further.”
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