MotoGP riders' reactions
Marco Melandri – 1st
"We started off with the base setting we found here in the winter tests and I felt comfortable straight away. We made some adjustments in the afternoon and tried some new tyres from Michelin, which gave me a lot of grip at maximum lean. Tomorrow I want to try and improve my performance in the last section because I think I can make more time up there. In any case, I'm not getting too excited – there is a long way to go this weekend."
Makoto Tamada – 2nd
"This afternoon I found back after a long time the right feeling on the bike which allowed me to constantly push the bike to the maximum. It seemed like I found myself in the winter test at the beginning of the season when everything was going in the right direction. I never lost the trust in my possibility to compete at a high level and finally the results are coming. Tomorrow morning we have to define some more details on the bike to achieve a competitive qualifying time. If the climatic conditions will remain similar I'm sure that I will be able to compete with the best for the all weekend of race. I owe a lot to my Team, the time to pay off the hard work done in these months has arrived."
Colin Edwards – 3rd
"It's almost as if Mugello never happened and we have come straight from Le Mans to Barcelona! We know how the bike should work for me and, even though the setting is very different to what we had in the test here because the bike has evolved so much, we dialled some things in that felt right as soon as I took it onto the track this morning. In the afternoon we made some adjustments to the suspension and general setting. I went out and did a 15-lap endurance test for Michelin at the start of the session on a hard compound, which gave us a lot of information, and I put on something a little softer at the end which was good for six or seven tenths - so we know which way we're going. We made a good start at Mugello and didn't make much progress from there but I'm confident that won't happen here because the feeling with the bike is already so much better."
Valentino Rossi – 5th
"We made a very good start to the day this morning but in the afternoon I had a few problems with front grip. I didn't have the stability I wanted in the corners and this meant that I wasn't able to push as hard as I would like. The new track surface is very different and the conditions changed a lot with the extra heat from the morning to the afternoon. A few riders were crashing out so I decided not to push too hard because the important day is tomorrow and, of course, Sunday. We have some work to do on the front end but in general the bike setting is getting better and better so we hope to continue tomorrow."