News 11 Nov 2009

MotoGP: Stoner and Hayden in top five for Ducati at Valencia


Casey Stoner and Nicky Hayden ended the second day of testing at Valencia inside the top five fastest riders on track.

Both riders began lapping at around midday because even though the sun was out and the wind had dropped this morning compared to yesterday the track surface was still cold. Stoner finished shortly after 4pm, having set the second fastest lap of the day. As well as continuing to work on new forks and a revised engine configuration, the Australian also tested a new soft rear tyre brought to the circuit by Bridgestone for use by all of the MotoGP riders.

Hayden also continued with a variety of set-up and tyre experiments, completing no fewer than 84 laps and clocking the fifth fastest time.

Casey Stoner (Ducati Marlboro Team) 2nd fastest; 1’32.195 (44 laps)
“We weren’t able to make much use of the day yesterday because of the high winds but today the conditions were much better. The new engine setting, which I am preferring so far, changes the performance of the bike in different ways, for example in corner exit, so we have to modify the set-up in order to get the most out of it. I also have to get used to it and adapt my riding style accordingly. It probably means I can’t get on the gas as hard and fast out of the corners but can keep it open more further in the corners. We also tried out the new Bridgestone, which seem to work well. In general I’m very pleased with how things are going.”

Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro Team), 5th fastest; 1’32. 981: (84 laps)
“Today we worked mainly on confirming our impressions from yesterday, running some more tests on the new forks and a bunch of other things on the bike set-up and with the new tyres. We have improved a few tenths here and there – the gap to the really fast group is still there but it has been a positive day, we have done a lot of laps and gathered a lot of data. We’ll do some more tests tomorrow on the engine settings and other set-up alterations. We also need to push hard to get the lap times down and close that gap to the lead group.”

Fabiano Sterlacchini – Pramac Racing Technical Director
“It was a very positive day. Mika wanted to try many different technical solutions, including the aluminum swingarm, which gave positive feedbacks. It seems that Mika is better with this set-up and we will continue to work towards this tomorrow morning. Aleix is very close to Mika lap time and this shows that despite his young age he will be already competitive in his first year in the MotoGP World Championship. Tomorrow morning our riders will still have some time on this bike before switching to the new one in February at Sepang test.”

Mika Kallio – Pramac Racing rider – 8th best lap time in 1.33.125 in 83 laps
“We have tried aluminum swingarm and compared to yesterday we have improved by six tenths of a second. Not too bad I would say. Work with the team went ahead without any big complications, on the contrary, in addition to the swingarm we tried other small changes that lead me to feel more comfortable riding the bike. I hope that tomorrow morning I can improve more to end positively my first year in MotoGP.”

Aleix Espargarò – Pramac Racing rider – 11th best lap time in 1’33.345 in 74 laps
“I do not know why but despite the time recorded today is good I feel I can do better. I must be patience because I still have a lot to learn in this category. Certainly my feeling with the bike is improving lap after lap and this is the most important thing. Sincerely we are a little sad because I know this winter I will miss very much my bike, but we will return loads in February for the first test of the year.”