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1000cc bikes in action at Sepang

1000cc bikes in action at Sepang

The first Official MotoGP™ Test of 2012 kicked off in Malaysia on Tuesday with the majority of attending teams putting their new 1000cc prototypes to the pavement by 2pm local time.

After two months off the track, the MotoGP™ paddock was back in action on Tuesday as the first official Test of 2012 began at the Sepang International Circuit. In attendance were the factory teams getting underway with development work on the new 1000cc bikes in addition several new teams contesting MotoGP CRT machines.

A damp track in the morning had the riders waiting to make first contact with the track, until late morning when all but Casey Stoner made their first laps aboard their 2012 machines.

Leading the early pace at the top of the timesheet after the opening half of day one was Factory Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo with a fastest lap of 2’02.406 aboard his new YZR-M1, with Valentino Rossi making the long awaited debut of the new Ducati Desmosedici GP12 and lapping four tenths of a second behind Lorenzo, with Ben Spies following with a best lap of 2’02.930.

Alvaro Bautista made his first laps aboard the Honda of the Gresini Team in a strong debut to rank fourth for the morning, with Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow the second highest satellite team rider in fifth position.

Following in sixth was Dani Pedrosa, who arrived at the test with a custom chassis on his Repsol Honda RC213V, distinctly different than that of team-mate Stoner, who made sat out the morning due to a pulled muscle in his back, though the Australian did remark upon inspecting his new ride that changes made to the bike since the test in November were impressive. In his stead was Honda test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi who made 3 laps aboard Stoner’s machine.

American Nicky Hayden gathered his first impressions of the GP12, making 10 laps with a best time of 2’04.665, followed by Moto2 World Champion Stefan Bradl aboard the LCR Honda. Next in the rankings was a still recovering Andrea Dovizioso on the Yamaha Tech 3 machine, the Italian is recovering from surgery to plate his collarbone after an off season motocross incident and will use this test to familiarize himself with his new bike.

Hector Barbara set a fastest lap of 2’05.112 aboard the Pramac Racing Ducati, eight tenths ahead of Czech rider Karel Abraham, who will focus on setting up rider position and testing the electronics and tires on his new GP12 Ducati.

The new Avintia Racing team saw team rider Ivan Silva and replacement rider Jordi Torres lap in the 2’11 and 2’12s, respectively, ahead of Forward Racing’s Colin Edwards, who is hard at work developing the electronics of his Suter-BMW.

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MotoGP, 2012

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