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Hard work during testing pays off for Valentino Rossi as he starts the Commercial Bank Grand Prix of Qatar in second.
Valentino Rossi walked away from Free Practice 1 satisfied with the work he and his team had done, able to set the second fastest time while completing 17 laps. As soon as his tyres were up to temperature Rossi began to push for faster and faster times, setting his best lap on his final circulation of the Losail International Circuit. Although his pace steadily improved, his Movistar Yamaha MotoGP teammate, Jorge Lorenzo, had the upper hand not only over one lap but also in relation to overall pace. Rossi was not focused entirely on times, instead working on improving the balance of his YZR-M1 to better improve his feeling with the Michelin tyres.
Friday will see the MotoGP™ World Championship out on track twice for FP2 and FP3, ending inside the top ten will be vital as failing to do so will force a rider to head through the difficult Q1 session. With the top ten inside a second of each other’s best times, Rossi will have to continue working throughout the weekend as no doubt his rivals will be snapping at his heels within no time.
Valentino Rossi: “The first practice was positive. I‘m quite satisfied, it was a strong way to start the season, because the second position is good and also the lap times are already not so bad. They're in the 1‘55s and the pace is quite good. We start working from what we did in the test. This means that we did a good job during pre-season and we begin with a good base, but now we have to keep focus. The condition of the track changes a lot session by session and together with the team we have to deliver good work so we will be ready when the grip becomes better. I‘ll try to improve the feeling and also try to make the right decision for the tyres.”
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