Having failed to even start last year's Grand Prix of Catalunya, double 2009 MotoGP winner Jorge Lorenzo is hoping to make amends on his return 'home' this weekend.
Mallorcan-born Lorenzo lived in Barcelona for much of his early career and, after a brief hiatus in London last year, has now returned to live in his home city.
Lorenzo has claimed four podium finishes from five starts so far this season, including second place to Ducati's Casey Stoner last time out at Mugello, placing the 22-year-old just four points behind Stoner in the championship standings.
The #99's only non-podium came after he crashed out in the closing stages of the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez, a disappointment he is determined to make up for during the second of three rounds on Spanish asphalt.
“I've had a great season so far but it hasn't all been perfect and I made a big mistake in Jerez when I tried to pass Stoner, so hopefully I can do better for my home fans this time!” said Lorenzo.
“After Mugello and Le Mans we know that anything can happen and you just have to keep calm and focused. Now we're going to my home, the closest place to my Island of Mallorca and one of my favourite tracks.
“I've always been fast there, right back to when I went there for the first time when I was in 125s and got my first second row start.
“My main aim this time is to have a better weekend than last year and to completely forget what happened,” said Lorenzo, who was forced to withdraw from the 2008 event after a heavy practice accident. “I improved on last year in Mugello so hopefully I can do the same again in Barcelona.”
“This year the championship is very close and we need to be consistently on the podium in order to stay in touch,” added team manager Daniele Romagnoli. “We've done very well in the last two races in the strange weather conditions but I think everyone would prefer a 'normal' race this time so let's hope for some Spanish sunshine.”
Lorenzo will start Sunday's race five points ahead of Fiat Yamaha team-mate and reigning champion Valentino Rossi.