Randy De Puniet fastest RC212V rider at post Jerez GP MotoGP test

2008-04-02 00:31
The Honda MotoGP riders stayed on at Jerez for a planned two-day test following the grand prix raced at the 4.423 km Andalusian circuit. Frenchman Randy de Puniet was the fastest of the six Honda riders present, setting fourth fastest time on the opening day of the two day test. De Puniet, who crashed on lap three of the grand prix, worked to improve the front end feeling of the RCV before working on the rear suspension in a bid to improve traction.

The second fastest Honda man was Shinya Nakano. The Japanese star is beginning to find his feet at San Carlo Gresini Honda and after finishing ninth in yesterday's race continued his recent improvement. Nakano and team-mate Alex De Angelis spent the greater part of the day testing tyres for Bridgestone.

The Repsol Honda Team of Dani Pedrosa and Nicky Hayden worked hard on perfecting machine set up following data gathered from yesterday's race. Pedrosa 's victory in the grand prix gave him the lead in the championship but he knows he has much work to do if he is to maintain his points lead in the coming races. The young Spaniard missed virtually all pre-season testing due to a broken hand and today's work on the base set up was vital as he strives to learn as much as possible about the 2008 RC212V.

Hayden spent time working on the clutch of his RCV in a bid to improve his corner entry speed then got to work with tyre supplier Michelin testing a range of new tyres prepared for the test by the French manufacturer. Pedrosa and Hayden ended the day eighth and ninth respectively on the time sheet using race tyres while the seven riders ahead of them all set their best times on qualifying rubber.

Andrea Dovizioso and the JiR Scot Honda team technicians dedicated their day analyzing every aspect of machine and rider performance over the race weekend. The former 125cc world champion is one of MotoGP's hardest working riders and is determined to understand the behavior of the RCV from lap one to the finish of the race, and the performance of the Michelin tyres he is racing with for the first time in his career.

Honda rider quotes and lap times.

Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda: 1m 39:484s (lap 88 of 97).
"It was a very long day for us. I made 88 laps in total and tested many things. This morning we lost some track time to fix a front-end problem. Then we will focus our work mainly on suspensions regulations and tyres testing: we found some good solutions but we still miss some adjustments to make a step forward. Anyway we improved the rear traction and, in the last two laps of the day, I tried many starts. I think we got a good base for next GP at Estoril track."

Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: 1m 40.166s (lap 60 of 69)
"Today we worked on basic setup to help us get more familiar with the bike, to know our package better and to find the best direction so we can continue improving. It's the kind of work we usually do at preseason tests but we weren't able to do this year because of my injury. It was a necessary job with a lot of stops in the pits but I think it was very useful. We also started working on tyres with Michelin and we will focus on tyre testing all day tomorrow. It will be a very important day, crucial for our development programme."

Nicky Hayden, Repsol Honda: 1m 40.389s (lap 25 of 80)
"We learned some stuff today, we were able to run pretty decent and consistent laps using reference tyres and we got some good data, so quite a positive day all in all. We had nothing major to test, just some different clutch options to get into the corners a little bit better and some general setup options, looking for a bit of edge traction to help save the tyre over race distance. We'll come back again tomorrow, get another full day and just work our way through some more options."

Andrea Dovizioso, JiR Scot Honda: 1m 40.394s (Lap 55 of 55)
"The race yesterday brought us back sharply to the reality of life in MotoGP. We had no illusions after Qatar, but after the Jerez race we have analysed with great attention to detail every point of the race and our approach during practice to each technical element of our set-up. The main objective for the team and I is to look more closely at the data acquired during the race and practice sessions and analyse it still further. I have worked a lot on my riding style and on the data, then I've also looked at how things have changed during the race. In race configuration on a single lap I'm fast, but I must improve my performance and make a more consistent rhythm during the whole race. In qualifying trim we have to move forward a great deal and I must learn how to use the qualifying tyres to their maximum."

Top 10 lap times.
1. Jorge LORENZO (YAMAHA) 1:38:679
2. Valentino ROSSI (YAMAHA) 1:39:117
3. Casey STONER (DUCATI) 1:39:218
4. Randy DE PUNIET(HONDA) 1:39:484
5. John HOPKINS (KAWASAKI) 1:39:569
8. Dani PEDROSA (REPSOL HONDA) 1:40:166
9. Nicky HAYDEN (REPSOL HONDA) 1:40:389
10 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (JiR Team Scot) 1:40.394

Source: Honda

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