Factory Yamaha MotoGP Test Wrap Up

Valencia MotoGP Test

Unlike Tuesday’s testing, the next year’s MotoGP grid didn’t have to deal with rain on Wednesday, making for a longer session.

And the factory Fiat Yamaha team of Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies took full advantage of the situation, staying in the top three on the time sheets as they did on Tuesday.

Lorenzo and Spies completed all Yamaha test requirements earlier in the day, and both were able to then evaluate some different Bridgestone tires ahead of the 2011 MotoGP season.

The 2010 MotoGP Champion came out strong like he did on Tuesday, but was beat by 0.054 of a second for the day by Repsol Honda rider Casey Stoner. Although Lorenzo was a bit slower Wednesday on the prototype Yamaha M1, his time of 1:32.012 from Tuesday was still the fastest time out of both days of the traditional post-season MotoGP testing.

Lorenzo and his Yamaha Crew Chief Ramon Forcada both commented on the performance at the final day of Valencia testing.

Jorge Lorenzo says: “Basically we tried some new tires from Bridgestone today, they had quite a different feeling, but there wasn’t a big difference in general performance. We also reconfirmed the settings we tried yesterday so we’ve given Yamaha some good data to work with over the winter. I’m very happy with how the test has gone; I’m quite tired so I’m looking forward to having some rest now and coming back strong to start again.”

Ramon Forcada says: “Today we finished the testing plan we made. There weren’t so many things to try as we did a really good job yesterday. We finished the Yamaha test plan so this morning we evaluated some tires and provided some good information to Bridgestone for their development.”

“We’ve finished early as we tested everything we needed to and Jorge felt good about all the results. It’s been a long season and after the emotions of the last Grand Prix races it’s time to let him go and have a rest! The new bike has the same feeling as the 2010 machine but with improvements, allowing us to be faster and perform better in a number of areas.”

The 2010 MotoGP Rookie of the Year Spies remained consistent throughout both days of testing on his new factory ride, taking third fastest on both days. After his impressive, initial performance on the Yamaha M1, Spies will return home to America before starting off his second season in the MotoGP Championship on a factory ride.

Spies and his Yamaha Crew Chief Tom Houseworth both responded to the Valencia testing performances.

Ben Spies says: “We’ve had another good day and another day of learning. We messed with the bike a bit, changed some settings and went in a positive direction. So another good session working with the new crew again, I’m very happy with it.”

“I read some comments from Jorge about the new engine for next year, he seemed to be happy with the way that was going so I look forward to seeing that in Malaysia. I’m looking forward to now having a couple of months of then getting back to it!”

Tom Houseworth says: “We tested the prototype again this morning, we collected the data from yesterday and following a meeting last night made some setting changes for today which we tested with very positive results.”

“Once we had achieved these we went ahead and tested the Bridgestone tires, testing three options, one of which Ben really liked a lot. The test has been very productive and very promising for the future on the new bike. Ben is really optimistic and looking forward to continuing at Sepang.”

The Fiat Yamaha MotoGP riders will not take a three-month Winter break before official MotoGP testing resumes at Sepang Feb. 1-3.

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One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007 and is currently Editor at Large at Ultimate Motorcycling. He is also the author of 365 to Vision: Modern Writer's Guide (How to Produce More Quality Writing in Less Time).