Michel Fabrizio Speaks… (P1, 1m38.7)"Today I had no particular problems. We found a setting and a tyre that I liked almost right away and I was able to make constant improvement throughout the day. I was losing a couple of tenths in the first split but I think it’s linked more to a characteristic of the four cylinder bikes than to the tyres. Anyway we are very satisfied and hope it bodes well for the rest of the weekend."Jonathan Rea Speaks… (P2, 1’38.821)
I’m really happy with this start to the weekend because the base setting we brought here from Imola was strong. The middle sector is where we’re having some problems, especially around the long left at turn 6. So, we’ll sit down tonight and see where we can improve things there. I’m happy to be at the top because my lap times have been consistently quick – it’s coming naturally and I’ve got into a good rhythm here. I also did two practice starts today, one of which was my best ever! So I hope that’s a good omen for the races.Noriyuki Haga Speaks… (P3, 1m38.8)"Well it didn’t go so badly. I am consistently losing a few tenths in the first split, but I hope that by finding more grip I can make up for the lack of top speed. We lost time during the first part of qualifying working with one particular tyre that I wasn’t particulary comfortable with but then, towards the end of the session, we found a better solution and I was able to make some faster laps. The times are all very close but I think I’ll be able to improve on my fastest time tomorrow morning." Ben Spies Speaks… (P4, 1’38.939)"It was a good first session, I’ve worked out where the track is going and we’ve been making improvements to the settings over the day. I think we’ve found a good pace for race distance, but there are still a couple of things we can improve on for tomorrow. The track is still a bit slippery in parts, but I still think we can find some more speed for the next session and get up there. For the first day I’m happy."Carlos Checa Speaks… (P5, 1’39.379)After the problems we had at Imola, we need to understand where we were losing time. We’ve just made the normal steps with the bike today – some areas are good, some not so good. We’ve got a lot of things to talk about tonight so that we can find some more tenths tomorrow. As Imola showed us, it’s very easy to slip from the top five to something like 12th place because the competition is always so strong. So we need to keep finding something extra because I want to stay at the top tomorrow.Max Biaggi Speaks… (P10, 1:39:834)"We still have a lot of work to do to in order to succeed in doing better," said Biaggi. "There’s a portion of the track where we’re still losing a lot of time and this really penalizes us. We still have to adjust the suspension and the management of the electronics, obviously never having raced here complicates the work to be done, such as the tuning of the engine and the gears. We’ll need a little time. We’ll see what happens tomorrow."Leon Haslam Speaks… (P11, 1’39.900)"This morning it felt pretty good. I had not been here for five years, and last time it was a cold Ducati day, so come here and put it straight into P2 felt pretty good. We tried a few things, a new tyre that didn’t work this afternoon, but all-in-all we went a little bit quicker, we are still up there, and still have a lot to come. I feel pretty confident."Tom Sykes Speaks… (P15, 1’40.048)"I think we made some improvements in qualifying today, obviously we need more but we’re heading in the right direction. I definitely think there’s a bit more to come from myself and from the bike as well. We’re struggling in a couple of corners, I think if we can sort that problem we will make a big difference. We’ve played with some tyres in that session as well so I think we know what race rubber we’re going to need for Sunday. Tomorrow morning we’ll continue to work on the settings, I certainly feel we can do more tomorrow." Leon Camier Speaks… (P17, 1:40:103)"I’m very happy," said Camier. "At the beginning of this experience, I didn’t know what to expect, given that I had never driven this motorcycle, now I realize that the RSV4’s potential is impressive. Now we’re working to find the best alignment for my driving style and I still need some time to improve my feeling with the bike and with the track, but I’m sure I’ll be able to do well this weekend."Ryuichi Kiyonari – (P16, 1’40.101)The crash was high-speed but I was sliding along OK when my should was wrenched by something in the gravel, I think. There’s nothing broken and I thought I would be OK this afternoon, so I didn’t take any pain killers. But it was very painful, so I think I will tomorrow.
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.