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Fresh from his Italian MotoGP victory at Mugello, Jorge Lorenzo kept up his good form by topping the test session staged on Monday. The Yamaha rider led the way from Honda duo Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner, mirroring the World Championship order.
One of the first bikes on-track, Lorenzo sampled new engine parts as well as a new software package and new suspension, putting in a best effort of 1:47.435. After 40 laps, the Mallorcan did not return to the circuit for the afternoon period, whereas team-mate Ben Spies continued to suffer from a stomach virus and did not make an appearance at all.
Honda ran with its 2013 prototype bike thanks to a huge endeavour over recent weeks. The aim was to solve the chatter issues which have plagued both Pedrosa and reigning Champion Stoner so much this year, as both ran an updated engine with a new specification. Pedrosa just missed out on the top spot, but did take a knock as he crashed in the afternoon.
“We tested many things today and I'm happy because we found some positives with the new engine, and also with the new chassis, that can help us in the second part of the season,” said Pedrosa, who ended the day a tenth of a second down on Lorenzo. “I was really hoping for some improvements after the issues we have had with the extra weight, chattering and the front tyres and in this test we made a step forward.
"Honda is working very hard and I'm sure they will do their best to be able to supply us the new parts for Laguna and the following races, but we'll see if it's possible with the engine allocations.”
At Ducati, the Italian squad began the first of four days of testing this week, with test rider Franco Battaini working alongside Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden. The trio worked on updates which could come as a massive step forward at the Laguna Seca race next weekend. One of the changes was a new Electronic Control Unit (ECU) for the Desmosedici engine, although running was hampered for Rossi because of a crash after just one run in the morning and problems with the ECU in the afternoon.
Cal Crutchlow placed most of his emphasis on race setup, looking to improve mid-corner speed as he worked with team-mate Andrea Dovizioso. The Coventry-born rider ended the day in fifth place, with Dovizioso sixth and Rossi rounding out the top ten.
Yamaha Factory Racing
|Yamaha Factory Racing|
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