March 13, 2006 at 3:52 pm #11695GixParticipant
Despite the impressive improvement of Kawasaki and Suzuki demoting the team down the standings at the Official Tests, Honda were still fast yesterday, with Dani Pedrosa going top-five in Jerez.
After Saturday’s race simulation, the young Spaniard decided to repeat the experience at the final session, covering 21 of the 27 laps which will make up the Grand Prix at the Andalusian circuit.
In two weeks, Pedrosa will have the first chance to put everything he has learned during the preseason to the test at the first Grand Prix of the year. Speaking after earning the fourth fastest time of the day, the current 250cc World Champion gave his verdict on yesterday’s session, the final opportunity for fine-tuning.
“Today we basically tested suspension things, because we had already achieved a good lap time yesterday, so we focussed on improving in certain parts of the circuit. I only tested the start twice and the truth is that I would have liked to try it some more times. I think that the balance of our preseason is good, because we have been constantly progressing and improving.
The most positive aspect is that we’ve been able to do many laps and that’s always good because it allows you to get to know the bike better before the first race. This bike isn’t as easy as the 250cc in any aspect.”
Team mate Nicky Hayden, sixth fastest at the Sunday test, put in 101 laps on the RC211V. Assigned the task of testing the bike whilst Pedrosa focussed on adapting to the MotoGP class, the American rider gave his verdict on the development of his 2006 bike.
“Well, the tests are over and now comes the true test, reality. Next time we will be in a race. I would like to say that everything went well and that everything is working perfectly, but we’re still having problems with the bike. We made some progress today and towards the end we tested on soft tyres to see how they work, and there is no doubt that it helped me to improve times. But this hasn’t been a race and we know that we cannot keep the pace. However, I’m very excited and looking forward to start racing. This is fun, but real competition is when we all get on the grid and ride side by side.”
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