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Checa crashes on first day of Yamaha test at Catalunya

Checa crashes on first day of Yamaha test at Catalunya

Checa crashes on first day of Yamaha test at Catalunya

Yamaha´s factory MotoGP teams continued their winter testing programme at the Circuit de Catalunya today, as they look to make up for time lost in a series of rain affected sessions at Jerez and Valencia. Overnight showers had left the Spanish track damp in the morning but it soon dried out to allow Carlos Checa, Marco Melandri, Alex Barros, Olivier Jacque and Shinya Nakano with ideal conditions for developing the latest evolution YZR-M1.

However, Checa´s day ended no sooner than it had begun, as he crashed out at the second turn and landed heavily on his bottom after 21 laps. The Spaniard was taken to hospital as a precaution but released soon afterwards without needing any treatment. He took no further part in today´s action but is expected to ride at his home circuit again tomorrow. Team-mate Marco Melandri, meanwhile, made a significant breakthrough with the minor braking problems he experienced at the team´s previous test in Valencia. This was his first test with the Yamaha at this circuit, and he adapted well to the longer and faster straights, ending the day with a best time of 1´46.2s having completed a total of 52 laps.

$$$ Team Director Davide Brivio was philosophical about the day, `We have had good weather conditions considering it is only February. We can only have about four or five hours a day of testing, as the track temperature is too low the rest of the day but we knew this before we came here´, said the Italian. `It is a great shame that Carlos fell again, we hope that he will be back out tomorrow. He is seeing his physiotherapist tonight so hopefully that will help him. Marco has been working very hard on his front end braking problem with the support of Brembo. His lap times today were not too bad. We are basically finding a way to adjust the braking system to his riding style, and will continue to do so tomorrow.´

Unofficial lap times:

Alex Barros, Gauloises Yamaha Team 1'44.8s (52 laps) Shinya Nakano, D'Antin Yamaha 1'46.1s (56 laps) Marco Melandri, Fortuna Yamaha Team 1'46.2s (52 laps) Carlos Checa, Fortuna Yamaha Team 1'46.6s (21 laps) Olivier Jacque, Gauloises Yamaha Team 1'49.1s (41 laps)

MotoGP, 2003, Carlos Checa

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