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Crucial free practice sessions commence on wet track

Crucial free practice sessions commence on wet track

Estoril being the first circuit on the 2008 World Championship calendar where there was no winter testing and a notoriously tough challenge in its own right Friday´s free practice sessions at the bwin.com Grande Premio de Portugal will be as crucial as ever, with the teams preparing for the stiff challenges that lie ahead of them this weekend.

Estoril being the first circuit on the 2008 World Championship calendar where there was no winter testing and a notoriously tough challenge in its own right Friday´s free practice sessions at the bwin.com Grande Premio de Portugal will be as crucial as ever, with the teams preparing for the stiff challenges that lie ahead of them this weekend.

Their job will be made all the more difficult due to overnight rain in Portugal which left plenty of surface water on track and although a brisk wind and some sunny spells may help to dry the asphalt as the day´s proceedings unravel more precipitation may well be on the cards.

For several MotoGP riders this will be their first experience of the Fernanda Pires da Silva circuit with new teams, while for 250cc graduates Jorge Lorenzo (Fiat Yamaha), Andrea Dovizioso (JiR Team Scot) and Alex de Angelis (San Carlo Honda Gresini) they will have to acclimatise quickly to 800cc riding at the Atlantic coast venue.

For the fourth 2008 MotoGP rookie, James Toseland, Friday will provide not only his first sample of the tricky Estoril track, but a maiden run-out on the team´s recently received new Yamaha pneumatic valve engine, which he and Tech 3 Yamaha team-mate Colin Edwards will try to become accustomed to as quickly as possible. Toseland hopes to push for the podium this weekend while Edwards will be keen to make amends following his Jerez crash and DNF.

The local weather conditions should also add to the unpredictability of the third round of the season, while some of the less experienced riders in the smaller classes will be keen to find their bearings rapidly on Friday morning, ahead of their provisional qualifying runs later in the day.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, bwin.com GRANDE PREMIO DE PORTUGAL

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