Motorcycle Types Adventure / Dual-Sport MotoGP: Valentino Rossi Regains Rhythm

MotoGP: Valentino Rossi Regains Rhythm

2011 MotoGP

After a stressful pre-season, and so-so results at the opening round of 2011 MotoGP in Qatar, Valentino Rossi appeared to regain some rhythm Friday at the opening practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix.

The nine-time World Champion Rossi was third fastest aboard the Ducati Team GP11 in Free Practice 1, a morning session when temperatures were a bit cooler at the Jerez MotoGP circuit.

Valentino Rossi was 0.526 of a second behind the leader, Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner, and 0.498 behind the second-fastest rider, Stoner’s teammate Dani Pedrosa.

These are the best results so far this MotoGP season for Rossi, who continues to struggle with the Ducati GP11; Rossi also lacks strength in the shoulder he injured last season while motocross training.

In Free Practice 2, the winds picked up as the temperatures ascended. Rossi wasn’t able to catch the lead MotoGP riders, the Italian finishing fifth fastest, 0.855 behind the quickest rider, Pedrosa. In both sessions, Valentino Rossi was the fastest of the Ducati riders.

Valentino Rossi (Ducati Marlboro Team GP11) says: “I’m happy because this morning I did the third-fastest time, and in the afternoon, when the higher temperature hurt us a little, I was fifth.

“Anyway, most of the riders went a bit slower in the second session. Apart from the two Hondas at the front, we’re closer to everyone else, which was our goal. It was a good day. There’s still work to do; we’re trying to find the right balance, and that’s why we’re trying two settings that are a little different from each other as we work on weight distribution.

“We have to improve the front feeling a little; the bike that I prefer still doesn’t turn like we want it to, which means we’ll have to find a compromise between the two setups. As for my shoulder, I don’t have much strength, but in terms of endurance, it’s a little better.”

Valentino Rossi will be back on the Jerez circuit Saturday morning for Free Practice 3 and MotoGP qualifying. The track has treated Rossi fair in the past; Rossi has eight wins there, six in the premier MotoGP class.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
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 Online Editor 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).

Breitling Top Time Deus Limited Edition Watch First Look

“Bikers, boarders, surfers, digital nomads,” Breitling CEO George Kerns observes, “this is a timepiece for dynamic people of action, purpose, and style. Our versatile...

86 Gear Motorcycles Yamaha XT630 Supermoto: Restomod Special

Sometimes the route to a custom build is a short one. An idea pops into a builder's head, and the process begins. Other times,...

Honda, KTM, Piaggio, and Yamaha Sign E-Motorcycle Battery Agreement

Get ready for the Swappable Batteries Consortium for Motorcycles and Light Electric Vehicles made up of Honda, KTM, Piaggio, and Yamaha. The goal is...

Laurin & Klement Slavia B – The Birth of Škoda Motorsports 120 Years Ago

Czechs Václav Laurin and Václav Klement founded their bicycle manufacturing company in Mladá Boleslav, Bohemia, in 1895. The company, Laurin & Klement, started a...

2021 Daytona Fantasy Supercross Tips (16 Fast Facts)

The Daytona Supercross is the midway point in the 2021 Monster Energy Supercross Championship Series. There are eight rounds in the book, and there...

BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy Comes To Europe For 2022

For the first time since its 2008 debut, the BMW Motorrad International GS Trophy competition will be held in Europe. Located above the northeast...