Rossi and Edwards complete pre-season testing at Jerez
Gauloises Yamaha Team riders Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards completed the last of 21 days of pre-season testing today, as the final day of the Jerez official drew to a close. Rossi completed the day with the fourth fastest time and his team-mate was eighth; both bettering the times they set on Friday and well inside the existing lap record of 1'42.788. They spent the day making last minute alterations and checks in order to refine the set-up of their YZR-M1s in preparation for the season-opening Grand Prix here in two weeks time.
Rossi completed 96 laps today, his most over the three days of the test, setting a best time of 1'40.539, despite a few complications with rear grip in the afternoon.
"We went quite well until lunchtime. However, during the afternoon we tried some new things and they didn't go quite as well as we had hoped," admitted Rossi. "We had some troubles in the braking sections because the bike was quite nervous when the tyre was coming to an end."
"We know we can do better and what we have to improve, so we are not too worried, it's just that there is not quite enough rear grip after I've done a lot of laps. The front is okay because we already fixed this in Barcelona. Anyway, I'm now really happy to finish the testing and I am feeling okay about the first race, the bike has good potential and I am looking forward to a good battle this year!"
Edwards also made the most of the last hours of testing before the first race, completing 73 laps with a best time of 1'41.284.
"I'm pleased because, other than Valentino, all the seven riders above me in the timings put on a qualifying tyre. I had a really good pace on the race tyres, consistently in the low 1'41s, and this bodes well for the race in two weeks time," said the Texan.
"However it took a lot of work to get to this point. We tried so many things today but finally we hit the nail on the head and now the bike works really well. I've got pretty much the same setting as Valentino, we're very similar in the way we ride the bike. I am now ready for a quick break at home and then, finally, the first race! It's been a long winter of testing!"