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Romagnoli: "Lorenzo has nothing to prove"

Romagnoli: 'Lorenzo has nothing to prove'

Officially unveiled as Manager for the Michelin-shod Fiat Yamaha setup -running rider Jorge Lorenzo in his maiden MotoGP season- on Friday, Daniele Romagnoli has already seen his young protégé in fantastic form in early 800cc tests.

Officially unveiled as Manager for the Michelin-shod Fiat Yamaha setup -running rider Jorge Lorenzo in his maiden MotoGP season- on Friday, Daniele Romagnoli has already seen his young protégé in fantastic form in early 800cc tests. The Italian former Telemetrist has revealed that he was pleasantly surprised by the reigning 250cc World Champion's early adaptation, and has also pinpointed the Spaniard's strengths as a rider.

"Jorge's improvement over just three tests has been remarkable," asserts Romagnoli. "Initially we concentrated solely on his riding position, because Jorge was used to riding in a completely different position to what is needed on our M1, which is very different to a 250cc. However, little by little we started to change the base set-up of the bike, working on the geometry, the suspension, a lot on the electronics and in particular reducing the engine braking a lot to suit him. Already at the first test in Valencia, Jorge gave a very good impression about how fast he was, as of course we knew from his race performances, and in Sepang we continued in the same rhythm.

"The big surprise came at the Jerez test, where he constantly bettered his own time and succeeded in setting a best time, on race tyres, which was only a tenth of a second slower than Dani Pedrosa, who was the fastest overall. The best point at Jerez came when he completed his first race simulation and was able to do the distance faster than the winner of the race, by quite a few seconds!"

Despite having a lot to learn onboard the Yamaha M1, the quality that allowed Lorenzo to become a two-time 250cc World Champion is sure to stand him in good stead in 2008.

"Jorge's best quality is his fluidity and the fact that he is a very ‘clean' rider. This allows him to carry a high-speed in the fast corners and with an 800cc bike this is even more important," notes Romagnoli.

"He has also demonstrated that he is very consistent and every time he goes onto the track he is showing a similar level of performance, which means his lap times vary only by a few tenths of a second. Of course he is still a novice in MotoGP and he needs to improve in the hard braking areas, where he needs time to find how he can brake later, but this is something normal coming from riding a 250cc, which are slower in a straight line. Likewise he needs time to become more accustomed to using the carbon brakes.

"Naturally Jorge's first year in MotoGP will be dedicated, above all, to learning," admits the Spaniard's new Team Manager. "To be constantly fast in all tracks it's necessary to have a remarkable understanding of the technical side of the bike and so the objective for this year is to prepare him as well as possible for the following season. Jorge has nothing to prove; he is already a double world champion in 250cc and he's already shown us in the first tests that he will be fast. My wish is that we will have the occasion to see him on the podium in this first year."

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, Fiat Yamaha Team

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