Yamaha’s Lorenzo Leads Day 1 of Jerez MotoGP Testing

Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo

2013 Jerez Preseason MotoGP Test, Day 1 Results

The final official preseason MotoGP test got underway Saturday at a rain-soaked Jerez in Spain. And though the rain showers significantly lowered lap times and prevented a few riders from completing a full day of testing, Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo finished over a second faster than the grid.

While dialing in his YZR-M1, Lorenzo posted a best time of 1:47.423 at the 2.748-mile circuit featuring 13 corners. To put this time into perspective, the lap record at Jerez is a 1:39.731 set by Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa in 2010.

At Saturday’s test, Lorenzo would finish 1.051 seconds ahead of Pedrosa, and 1.101 seconds ahead of Pedrosa’s teammate, Marc Marquez.

Speaking of the weather at Jerez, MotoGP reports “the first half of the day was all but a complete washout. As the session began, sunshine and dark clouds were vying for the circuit as they each covered half of it, but it was the latter, which prevailed to bring several, heavy rainstorms. As the showers were intermittent, the field was never treated with either fully wet or dry conditions which resulted in most riders spending much time in their garages; as only four sets of Wet tires are available for the duration of the test, using them in the transitional conditions posed too much of a threat and overheating was a real possibility.”

Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1 MotoGP) says: “We stayed on the track the whole day in the wet conditions and it was good to see how the bike performed. We improved a little bit but then the rear tire dropped so we have to calm the bike down a little bit in the acceleration.

“We are quite good in the wet here in Jerez. It’s the first time we are in these conditions so it’s important to understand what our levels are. It’s important to be competitive in this situation. We proved when the track was drying up that we could keep the performance of the rear tire over distance. It doesn’t matter how fast you are in one lap, if you can’t keep the level over the whole race you cannot win.”

As for Pedrosa and Marquez, both riders worked on wet setup. Pedrosa primarily focused on chassis stiffness, and various setups on the RC213V, the Spaniard hoping for drier weather to commence dry setup.

Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC213V MotoGP) says: “Today was the first day of testing here in Jerez and we were able to try various things in the wet. We had some very productive laps, as the asphalt was very wet. Sometimes there isn’t enough water on the track and the conditions aren’t adequate. The feeling with the bike is very positive, because after so many days riding in the dry it was good to go out in the wet. Let’s see if in the coming days we have more luck and can ride more in the dry, in order to try out the last few things before the season starts.”

Marquez, who led all three days of a private testing session at Austin’s Circuit of the Americas two weeks ago, which will host MotoGP April 7, had his first true experience in fully wet conditions. This allowed him to understand tire degradation and traction control of the RC213V in the wet.

Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda RC213V MotoGP) says: “Today was a very important day for us, because we tried out the bike in the wet. In Malaysia we only did four laps in the wet and it wasn’t as wet as it was here. We’ve made steady improvement in these conditions. I was very rigid on the bike at the start, but improved and realized it is very important to be smooth. Also, I notice wet tires wear quite quickly at this track.

“This is something I have to learn how to manage, because they can catch you out. I also learnt that traction control in the wet is much more important than in the dry. We still have a lot to improve. We have a good fast lap, but need to improve on used tyres and on our own consistency.”

Taking the fourth quickest time was Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone, followed by Ducati’s test rider Michele Pirro. Yamaha Factory Racing’s Valentino Rossi finished sixth quickest, 2:020 behind teammate Lorenzo.

Following Rossi was Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden and Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Cal Crutchlow. LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl, who suffered a small crash, finished in ninth, with Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso taking the tenth spot.

In 11th was Ignite Pramac Racing Ducati’s Ben Spies followed by the leading CRT bike, PBM’s ART piloted by the Colombian Yonny Hernandez.

The MotoGP grid returns to Jerez Sunday for the second day of testing ahead. MotoGP reports that more rain is forecasted for Sunday and Monday.

2013 Jerez Preseason MotoGP Test Times, Day 1 Results:

Pos Rider Team Fastest lap Lead. Gap Prev. Gap Laps Last lap
1 LORENZO, Jorge Yamaha Factory Racing Team 1:47.423 24 / 39
2 PEDROSA, Dani Repsol Honda Team 1:48.474 1.051 1.051 23 / 30
3 MARQUEZ, Marc Repsol Honda Team 1:48.524 1.101 0.050 29 / 38
4 IANNONE, Andrea Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team 1:48.984 1.561 0.460 27 / 27
5 PIRRO, Michele Ducati Test Team 1:49.292 1.869 0.308 39 / 48
6 ROSSI, Valentino Yamaha Factory Racing Team 1:49.443 2.020 0.151 25 / 36
7 HAYDEN, Nicky Ducati Team 1:49.643 2.220 0.200 20 / 20
8 CRUTCHLOW, Cal Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1:49.692 2.269 0.049 10 / 19
9 BRADL, Stefan LCR Honda MotoGP 1:49.790 2.367 0.098 27 / 33
10 DOVIZIOSO, Andrea Ducati Team 1:50.266 2.843 0.476 21 / 22
11 SPIES, Ben Ignite Pramac Racing Team 1:50.957 3.534 0.691 18 / 18
12 HERNANDEZ, Yonny Paul Bird Motorsport 1:51.269 3.846 0.312 25 / 31
13 BAUTISTA, Alvaro GO&FUN Honda Gresini 1:51.277 3.854 0.008 27 / 31
14 ABRAHAM, Karel Cardion AB Motoracing 1:51.333 3.910 0.056 26 / 26
15 CORTI, Claudio NGM Mobile Forward Racing 1:52.034 4.611 0.701 31 / 35
16 SMITH, Bradley Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1:52.047 4.624 0.013 14 / 14
17 PETRUCCI, Danilo Came IodaRacing Project 1:52.180 4.757 0.133 11 / 18
18 BARBERA, Hector Avintia Blusens 1:52.291 4.868 0.111 13 / 17
19 AOYAMA, Hiroshi Avintia Blusens 1:52.676 5.253 0.385 50 / 56
20 EDWARDS, Colin NGM Mobile Forward Racing 1:53.992 6.569 1.316 12 / 17
21 STARING, Bryan GO&FUN Honda Gresini 1:56.119 8.696 2.127 31 / 37
22 PESEK, Lukas Came IodaRacing Project 1:56.413 8.990 0.294 17 / 17
23 LAVERTY, Michael Paul Bird Motorsport 1:56.931 9.508 0.518 12 / 12