June 15, 2009

Muggy conditions for Monday morning testing

The weather was overcast and humid as the first morning of post-race testing in 2009 took place at the Circuit de Catalunya, with rain threatening for the afternoon session.

As the riders stopped for their lunchbreak at 1pm at the Circuit de Catalunya on the first day of post-race testing in 2009 it was Andrea Dovizioso at the top of the timesheet.

The Italian rider has a new chassis to test on his evolving RC212V and he put in 35 laps in the opening three hours of the test in order to complete as much as possible early in the day - with the cloudy skies and some light raindrops threatening worse later in the day.

Dovizioso’s 1’42.230 best lap put him 0.216s clear at the head of the timesheet ahead of second fastest participant Jorge Lorenzo.

Fiat Yamaha star Lorenzo was himself also busy in the morning session, on the back of his epic Sunday Barcelona race, putting in 39 laps, recording a best time of 1’42.446 and testing various new electronics settings on his Yamaha M1 machine.

Casey Stoner was also on the pace, laying down a best time just over half a second behind Dovizioso. Stoner only completed 21 laps due to his continued sickness, opting for short bursts on track as he - like the rest of the Ducati (factory and satellite) riders - continued trying various solutions with aluminium and carbon swing arms.

Rizla Suzuki riders Loris Capirossi and Chris Vermeulen were testing engine management and suspension parts, and were both lapping rapidly as they had done in preseason testing, but frustratingly were unable to use the new engine they received this weekend.

Looking to improve on his modest form thus far with Ducati, Nicky Hayden was the first rider out on track at 10am, the American well-known for enjoying as many test hours as possible and looking to make the most of one of the two days of post-race testing (the other will be at Brno in August) scheduled for this season.

By 1pm however, Hayden was only 13th on the timesheet having lapped around 2.5s down on early pace-setter and his Repsol Honda replacement Dovizioso.

Valentino Rossi was not out on track in the early hours, the Italian star stating after his incredible race victory on Sunday that he would sleep as much as possible before testing today, recovering from the energy sapping Barcelona contest and resting a sore neck.

In addition to Monster Yamaha Tech 3 pair Colin Edwards and James Toseland, whose team has elected not to test, the injured Dani Pedrosa was also absent, with satellite Honda rider Yuki Takahashi present in the paddock but not testing due to a hand injury picked up on Sunday.


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