Spies and Edwards storm in Sepang

Tech3 Test Report

Ben Spies and Colin Edwards continued their 2010 MotoGP preparations in impressive fashion in Malaysia today, the American duo both occupying a place in the top six on the timesheets.

In typically hot and humid conditions at the 5.548km Sepang circuit, Spies was one of the fastest and most consistent performers on track, the Texan clocking a best time of 2.01.843 to finish fifth overall.

The ideal track conditions presented Spies with the perfect opportunity to continue learning more about his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YZR-M1 machine. The 25-year-old spent time working on revised geometry settings to improve rear grip and he managed to shave close to 0.4s off his best time when he made an impressive debut at the technical Sepang circuit just three weeks ago.

Just one place and 0.054s further back was Edwards, who clocked a best time of 2.01.897 despite a minor technical issue this morning costing him precious track time.

Edwards still had a positive day, making big strides with a new YZR-M1 swingarm while also evaluating new electronics as Yamaha works tirelessly to ensure it remains the dominant brand in MotoGP this season.

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team has one more day of testing tomorrow in Sepang before the reduced pre-season schedule concludes in Qatar next month.

Ben Spies Speaks… 5th 2.01.843 – 42 laps

"It was hot out there today but I’m happy with how I performed and I feel I’ve accomplished a fair bit. I automatically picked up where I left off here because my fourth lap today was only three-tenths slower than my best time at the first test. I’m close to half-a-second faster than the last test and I’m more consistent. My fastest laps were all on tyres that had done race distance and that makes me happier than anything else. It’s not so much that I got under the 2.02 barrier but I did it on worn tyres and I think that will be one of my big strong points this season."

"I feel like I’m getting closer to finding the limit of the Bridgestone tyres and I’m getting more comfortable on them, but we still need to do more work. Today we played around with the bike a bit more than previously just to understand a few things but it was nothing major. Some changes were good and some were bad and I feel we made some important progress and I definitely had more grip. Everyday I’m trying to learn something and go a little bit quicker and that’s what I achieved."

Colin Edwards Speaks… 6th 2.01.897 – 35 laps

"After the small problem I had this morning I had to play catch up pretty quick to the rest of the guys but I managed to do some good laps and I’m happy with my pace. It was a productive day and I feel like we’ve learned a few things. Everybody is testing electronics and Yamaha have done another good job because what I tried definitely has some good points and they are moving in the right direction."

"Yamaha might have dominated last year but they definitely haven’t just taken the easy option and sat back. They’ve worked really hard on improving what was already a great bike, and some of the improvements have really helped me. I did more work on the new swingarm and I like it. It seems to help the front and the rear of the bike and it gives me a lot more confidence. And it helps a lot with my front feeling, which I had an issue with a bit last year."

2010 MotoGP Test Times (Day 1, Sepang 2)

1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Fiat Yamaha Team 2’01.068
2. Casey Stoner (AUS) Ducati Marlboro Team 2’01.219
3. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Repsol Honda Team 2’01.631
4. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 2’01.687
5. Ben Spies (USA) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2’01.843
6. Colin Edwards (USA) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2’01.897
7. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 2’02.036
8. Mika Kallio (FIN) Pramac Racing Team 2’02.038
9. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 2’02.078
10. Marco Melandri (ITA) San Carlo Honda Gresini 2’02.086
11. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Marlboro Team 2’02.22
12. Hiroshi Aoyama (JPN) Interwetten-Honda MotoGP 2’02.419
13. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Pramac Racing Team 2’02.447
14. Hector Barbera (SPA) Aspar Team 2’02.485
15. Randy De Puniet (FRA) LCR Honda MotoGP 2’02.535
16. Marco Simoncelli (ITA) San Carlo Honda Gresini 2’03.254