• Yamaha completes testing in Texas

    Yamaha Factory Racing completeed their testing activities today at the Circuit of Americas track in Texas. Originally planned for a three-day test, riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi managed to provide all the data required over the first two days so will not continue tomorrow. Both Lorenzo and Rossi used the two days to work with their crews on set up to find the optimum performance from their YZR-M1s’ for the long and technical track. The two made big improvements from the first morning, shaving several seconds off their first times but were still looking for more grip at full lean.

    The Factory team will now re-join the rest of the MotoGP paddock back in Europe for the next Official IRTA test at the Jerez De La Frontera Circuit in Spain on the 23rd March.

    The fans will like MotoGP here, it is going to be a great show.

    Jorge Lorenzo

    Jorge Lorenzo, 3rd; Best lap time (at 3pm local time): 2’04.664 – 17 Laps –
    “I feel better today, especially in the last run before the lunch break, we changed the set up of the bike and we improved some tenths so we are closer to the fastest riders, but not as much as we would like. We were too soft in the suspension to start with, we made it harder and in this track it works.

    These two days that we are here I think is enough to get a good idea of set up and riding style. The fans will like MotoGP here, it is going to be a great show.

    We have been trying different set ups of the bike, no new parts, just playing with the set up, changing the suspension and forks and in the last run I improved half a second with set up changes.

    We still don’t have enough grip on the rear so we can’t lean over with confidence which is why we are further behind than in Sepang.

    I am adapting my riding style every lap a little for the track. In the main straight we are at 340kmh/h which is an amazing speed; when you have to brake and put your helmet up the wind is very strong so it’s difficult to be stable.”

    Valentino Rossi, 5th; Best lap time (at 3pm local time): 2’05.518 – 29 Laps –
    “The feeling with the track improved today, we started to work on the bike to improve the difficult points, especially in the three very hard braking areas where it is important to have good stability. It’s also very important to have grip on the edge through the hairpin to have speed along the straight.

    It looks like you can make a big difference in the slow parts here. The chicane part in turn two is very technical and difficult as it is blind; you have to go a bit with memory.

    Step by step we improved a lot from yesterday but have some disadvantage compared to the other guys so we need to put all the sections together. The target was to come here and try to understand the track and try to be ready for the race.

    Our competitors are able to accelerate faster than us from the hairpin and they have a bit more grip on the edge compared to us so these are the areas where we have to work, in the flowing parts we are not so bad.

    The track is good, a very classical ‘Tilke’ track, I like the fast parts, turn two and turn ten especially. There is lots of hard braking and it is very wide so good for overtaking. The long right before the last two lefts is also good. Its fun and not too hot like it is in Sepang so it’s a good place to make a motorcycle race.”

    Today the results we got are quite promising and we are leaving Austin with a lot of useful data.

    Massimo Meregalli

    Massimo Meregalli – Yamaha Factory Racing Team Director –
    “First of all I would like to remark that it has been a good idea to come here. Yesterday we were able to download a lot of data from both riders; that has permitted us to find a much better set up.

    Today the results we got are quite promising and we are leaving Austin with a lot of useful data. We are expecting different conditions for the race but the test has been successful. We are now looking forward to the Jerez test which is important as we will decide there how to start for the season.

    The test here was organized by Honda to cover three days but we knew from the beginning that two days would be enough for us. The target was to allow the rider to get used to the circuit and get as much data as possible for our Japanese engineers.”

    Yamaha Factory Racing

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  • Looking ahead to the Sebring 12 Hours

    Looking ahead to the Sebring 12 Hours

    America’s oldest long distance sports car race takes place this Saturday on the rough and tumble Sebring airfield circuit in central Florida. A world championship sports car race from its second running in 1953 through 1972, Sebring became an IMSA race in ‘73 and has been a key round of the American Le Mans Series since it was created by Don Panoz in 1999.

    This will be Sebring’s last year as the opening round of the ALMS. Next year it will follow the Rolex 24 at Daytona as the second round of the combined Grand-Am/ALMS series and everyone hopes the spirit of the ALMS will not be drowned by the merger.

    sports cars  Looking ahead to the Sebring 12 Hours

    Now known as the ‘Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh from Florida’, this year’s race features a pair of factory Audi R18 e-tron quattros. This will be the first time a hybrid car has raced at Sebring and is likely to be the team’s farewell appearance in the classic American race. The two Audi e-trons will be driven by Marcel Fässler /Benoît Tréluyer/Oliver Jarvis and Tom Kristensen/Alan McNish/Lucas di Grassi. Fässler and Tréluyer won last year’s Le Mans 24 Hours of course, while Kristensen and McNish share a dozen Sebring victories.

    sports cars  Looking ahead to the Sebring 12 Hours

    Six other LMP1 cars are entered at Sebring. Rebellion Racing will race a pair of Lola-Toyotas with the number one entry driven by Nicolas Prost/Nick Heidfeld/Neel Jani. Rob and Chris Dyson’s team will race two Lola-Mazdas with Chris Dyson/Guy Smith/Butch Leitzinger in the lead car. Greg Pickett’s ALMS championship-winning Muscle Milk team begins its title defence with Romain Dumas joining regular drivers Klaus Graf and Lucas Luhr aboard Pickett’s HPD-ARX-03c. And the prototype Delta Wing will make its third start, running for the first time in the P1 class on Bridgestone tyres.

    Five LMP2 cars will be in the field at Sebring, including a lone Zytek-Nissan with Tom Kimber-Smith on the driving team and four HPD ARX-03bs. Two of the HPDs will be run by Scott Tucker’s Level 5 Motorsports, which features a strong driver line-up including Marino Franchitti and IndyCar stars Ryan Hunter-Reay, Simon Pagenaud and Ryan Briscoe. The other two HPDs are entered by Extreme Speed Motorsports for Scott Sharp/Johannes van Overbeeck and Ed Brown/Guy Cosmo.

    sports cars  Looking ahead to the Sebring 12 Hours

    The ALMS’s GT class features a dozen factory or factory-backed cars run by seven teams. Bobby Rahal’s championship-winning Team RLL will race two of BMW’s new Z4 GTEs. Corvette Racing will run a pair of C6 ZR1s with Jan Magnussen, Oliver Gavin and Richard Westbrook on the driving team. Gulf/Aston Martin Racing will race two Vantage V8s with Darren Turner, Bruno Senna and Pedro Lamy among the drivers. Also entered are two Ferrari F458 Italias, a pair of Porsche 911 GT3 RSRs, and two Viper GTS V-10s. The 42-car field is completed by seven Oreca LMP Challenge cars and ten Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars.

    Of course, Sebring is renowned for the sustained party atmosphere among the motorhomes and tent-dwellers, which are scattered across the infield. Over the years many drivers have told tales as they drive into the evening of encountering the enticing aroma of steaks barbecuing on grilles, wood smoke and the more pungent aroma of Floridian weed. The ribaldry begins late in the week as practice and qualifying takes shape and reaches a crescendo on Saturday night. Like Le Mans, the infield party is as much a part of the weekend as the race itself.

    Motor Sport Magazine – The original motor racing magazine

    Source: Motor Sport Mag