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Yamaha press releases on our motor sports racing activities

Final Pre-season MotoGP Test Completed
Yamaha Factory Racing finishes the pre-season test in fine form
Mar. 16, 2011

Qatar Tests, Day One (Mar. 13, 2011)
Final pre-season test gets underway at Qatar


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 wrapped up today in fifth, 0.411 seconds from the front.

Test Times (Mar. 13)

Pos. Rider Team Machine Time
1 Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'56.271
2 Casey Stoner Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'56.414
3 Hiroshi Aoyama San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1'56.444
4 Ben Spies Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha 1'56.563
5 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha 1'56.682
6 Colin Edwards Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1'56.742
16 Cal Crutchlow Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1'57.737

Losail Record Lap: C. Stoner 2008, 1'55.153
Losail Best Lap: J. Lorenzo 2008, 1'53.927

Qatar Tests, Day Two (Mar. 14, 2011)
Spies Satisfied After Final Pre-Season Test Session in Qatar


The biggest threat on the track this evening for Yamaha Factory Racing riders Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies was not other riders but fiercely strong winds blowing across the Losail circuit in Qatar. The final pre-season MotoGP test session before next weekend's opening race was a battle against the elements.

American rider Spies built steadily up the time sheets, slotting in as second fastest rider just before the midway point of the session. He took his last opportunity before the race weekend to work through some further geometry settings with Crew Chief Tom Houseworth as they hunted down extra grip on the track, wrapping up at the end in third 0.613 seconds from the front. Spies'team mate Lorenzo struggled to make a significant step forward from yesterday's session, hampered by the winds the Mallorcan was unable to find the best set up for the conditions. He finished the session with an extended run to check on fuel consumption, ending the final test of the winter off-season in seventh position on the time sheets.

Test Times (Mar. 14)

Pos. Rider Team Machine Time
1 Casey Stoner Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'55.681
2 Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'55.745
3 Ben Spies Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha 1'56.294
4 Marco Simoncelli San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1'56.433
5 Andrea Dovizioso Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'56.439
6 Randy De Puniet Pramac Racing Team Honda 1'56.445
7 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha 1'56.707
8 Colin Edwards Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1'56.716
15 Cal Crutchlow Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1'57.730

Losail Record Lap: C. Stoner 2008, 1'55.153
Losail Best Lap: J. Lorenzo 2008, 1'53.927

Ben Spies (Day Two Position: 3rd, 1'56.294, Laps 45)


"It's been a good test, I'm happy with it. We tried a few different things today and improved the bike some more. We've now got a couple of days to look over the data ready for the four day weekend, there will be plenty more riding opportunities before Sunday. I was pretty confident coming here after Sepang, hopefully we can make the bike even better before the race. Last year we saw that the M1 worked well at every track, it's Yamaha's strong point and I think it's the same this year."

Jorge Lorenzo (Day Two Position: 7th, 1'56.707, Laps 48)


"Today wasn't the best day for me. It was not because my riding is bad, I always admit when it is, we struggled with the set up of the bike during the session and unfortunately we didn't make a step forward. The wind was tough but that was a problem for everyone. We also tried a different swing arm today but it didn't make an improvement. We will work over the next few days to be ready to improve in the next sessions on Thursday."

Wilco Zeelenberg, Team Manager
"Today was a very windy day in Qatar, compared to yesterday we struggled a little bit with the feeling and the balance of the bike because of it. We made a long run at the end even though we hadn't found a perfect feeling to see what our fuel consumption was and also gather some more electronic information. The bike set up wasn't perfect for it but it was necessary to do."

Massimo Meregalli, Team Director
"We are satisfied with Ben's bike set up, he was consistently quite fast. Ben didn't push 100% which makes us confident for the race weekend. We didn't try a really long run but managed to maintain a consistent fast pace with a used tyre. We didn't make as big a step forward today on Jorge's side as we would have liked however we completed a useful longer run to gather some valuable data. We're confident that we have enough sessions before Sunday's race for both riders to find an optimum and competitive set up."

Colin Edwards (Day Two Position: 8th, 1'56.716, Laps 99)


"It has been another positive test and now I'm really looking forward to the racing starting. The bike has been working awesome again at this track and it shows the hard work we put in during the two tests at Sepang recently has really paid off. We haven't really needed to make any major changes to the bike and that is a good sign. If you can take the bike to a completely different track and it works then it shows we've found a good set-up and I'm confident we go into the new season with a really good package. I ran through a few tyre options for Bridgestone tonight and got some good information but the conditions were really windy. I want to be further up the timesheets with a better lap time but it is the last day of testing before we start racing and I just didn't want to risk pushing for an outright lap time in those conditions. The wind was so bad in places it was blowing the front - end out from underneath you, so I didn't want to be caught out. I feel really motivated and excited and while I know it is going to be a tough year, I feel we can put up a good fight. The field is probably the strongest it's ever been but I'm ready to go out there and fight for some good results."

Cal Crutchlow (Day Two Position: 15th, 1'57.730, Laps 79)


"The test certainly didn't end how I wanted and it is a real shame because we had made some changes to the balance of the bike that really helped my confidence with the front-end tonight. But I made a silly little mistake at Turn 10. I lost the rear and closed the throttle but then lost the front and I couldn't get my left hand out from underneath the handlebar. I've basically taken the tip off my left little finger and it is really sore now. I don't need surgery but it is obviously going to be uncomfortable this weekend for the race now. It is a shame because I was only 0.5s away from the top ten last night. I adapted to riding under the floodlights really quickly once I realised the shadows weren't somebody trying to overtake me! I was confident of taking another step tonight and I'm sure I could have done without the crash. It cost me nearly three hours of track time, which I can't really afford to lose at this stage, but I'm still looking forward to my MotoGP debut. It will be an honour to line-up against this field on Sunday night and as always I'll be giving it my best."

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