Felice Monteleone – FMPhotoSport MotoGP News
MotoGP Official Test Sepang 2 Day 3/3 – Sepang International Circuit (Malaysia), 25th February 2015
The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team has wrapped up the second official test of the 2015 season today at the Sepang International circuit in Malaysia. Riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi have spent the three days of riding working through a number of testing elements, an update to the gearbox and some intensive work on their YZR-M1 set ups.
Today’s last day of testing was the toughest for the riders as they focused on a time attack in the morning before starting a full race distance simulation in the afternoon in the hotter temperatures.
Lorenzo scored his fastest lap of the day in the morning with a 1’59.437 to slot into second on the timing sheets, 0.322s from first, a position he held until the end of the day. The time is his fastest of both this and the previous Sepang test. Finally the heat proved too extreme for him to be comfortable and it was decided to wrap up for the day having not completed the race simulation.
Rossi’s fastest time from the cooler morning session was a 1’59.833, putting him in fifth place, 0.718s from the top, where he stayed to the end of the day’s riding. Like his teammate Lorenzo, Rossi also suffered in the afternoon session and was unable to find a set up that worked well enough to complete the race simulation.
The team will now return to Europe whilst the engineers return to Japan to process the data and take another step forward in the direction of the 2015 YZR-M1. Movistar Yamaha MotoGP will regroup in Qatar for the final pre-season test and opening race of the season at the end of March.
99 – Jorge Lorenzo 2nd / 1’59.437 / 73 laps
“Well today I got the best lap time in Sepang ever for me, two tenths faster than the first test. The track was in worse condition than before so the bike has improved quite a bit. Also we made a lot of laps in the 2’00 time. At 3:30pm we tried a race simulation in the highest temperature I’ve ever ridden here in Sepang; it was really difficult to keep a good lap time and pace, the bike felt not so good with so much temperature. I decided to stop as I wasn’t feeling confident in braking. Everyone did a simulation at this time of day so I think they all had problems also. In general I think it’s been a very positive test and our engineers have collected enough information and data to make further improvements for the next test in Qatar and especially for the first race of the season, at the end of March. I look forward to getting on board my M1 in two weeks while in the meantime I will keep on working and training hard, as usual, for the best possible start of the season.”
46 – Valentino Rossi 5th / 1’59.833 / 59 laps
At the end it has been a positive test. I’m not very happy about my position and my lap time as I wasn’t able to make a good lap, I always had traffic and didn’t have the right moment to push. I think I could have been faster and in the top three. We continued to work with the gearbox and settings and we worked with the used tyres, where we still have to improve with the new bike. Now it will be very interesting to understand our level in another track as the balance between manufacturers can change there. I’m very curious about Qatar and how competitive we are for the first race.”
Kouji Tsuya 2015 Yamaha YZR-M1 Project Leader
“We have finished this second test at Sepang in a successfully way. Here in Malaysia we have tested especially an updated gearbox both with Valentino and Jorge and we’ve got good results and very good feedback from both riders, similar that we expected. We have worked well during these three days of testing and we have successfully completed our test plan without any issues. Obviously there are things yet to improve but I think it was a great beginning. I would like to thank both riders for the great efforts they put on track testing new components. We could get good feedback and data, enabling us to make further improvements in the near future so now we just have to keep on working very hard by full power and be ready at the next test in Qatar. We want to win the opening race also at Losail, to cheers from all Yamaha fans all over the world!”
Massimo Meregalli Team Director
“During the morning everything went well and lap times were good. When we started the race simulation in the afternoon the circuit conditions were much hotter and the bike behaved completely differently. As a result we were unable to find a pace we were happy with. The engineers will now take the data away from these three days and work to find a solution for the hotter temperatures for our next time on track. Overall we are satisfied with the majority of our testing, the riders have worked extremely hard as have all the team members. We are confident we will be fighting fit and ready in Qatar.”