Jorge Lorenzo says he is keen to put the past behind him as he looks to impress on his second MotoGP outing at Laguna Seca.
The FIAT Yamaha rider made his debut at the circuit last season but failed to finish after high-siding off his bike on the opening lap.
The 22-year-old returns to the circuit currently lying second to team-mate Valentino Rossi in the standings after an impressive season to date, highlighted by victories at Motegi and at Le Mans.
Now, Lorenzo will chase his third victory of the year and said he wasn't thinking about the events of last season.
“Last year Laguna wasn't good for me but I don't think about this,” he said. “It's the only time I've been there but I don't see that as a problem – until 2008 I'd never won in Portugal before and I won my first race there in MotoGP, and then again this year I won in Motegi where I'd never won before, so I don't consider any track 'bad' for me – the past doesn't matter.
“We are feeling very strong after the last races and everyone is very motivated to continue in the same way so I am looking forward to the challenge and learning more about the track. I will do my best and hopefully that will mean we can run at the front again.”
Lorenzo's team manager Daniele Romagnoli added that he was confident of seeing his rider challenge at the front despite his relative lack of experience of the Laguna circuit.
“After the last great race in Assen this is a very short break for everyone but we have to move straight on to the US for the next round!” he said. “The high motivation in our team continues after another strong performance from Jorge and we are looking forward to having the chance for another good result.
“This year our package is much more consistent and we know that we can put up another good fight, despite Jorge's inexperience at Laguna. Everyone in the team enjoys going to Laguna – it's a great place – so we're looking forward to another exciting weekend.”