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Spies pleased with second Sepang test

"It doesn't look super-great on paper, but if you look at what would happen in a race situation we're a lot closer to the front than it looks" - Ben Spies.
Yamaha's Ben Spies finished this week's Sepang MotoGP test the fastest of the non-Honda riders, in fifth, despite being one of the first to pack up on the final day.

The Texan wrapped up the second test of the year at lunchtime, having completed 32 laps in the morning session.

Although the team had kept back four sets of soft tyres to go for a fast 'qualifying' time, only two were used and the 2010 Rookie of the Year finished just over one-second from the best lap time of Repsol Honda of Casey Stoner, who led all three days.

Speaking at the back of the Factory Yamaha pits just before leaving Sepang, Spies admitted that his late day two fall had left him a little sore.

“I took a little bit more of a shock than I thought I did in the crash yesterday,” he said. “I was a little bit sore this morning. I still went to put in a pretty good lap. We had four sets of tyres set aside, but we only used two of them.

“It wasn't a perfect morning and a perfect lap, but it was decent and we went faster than we've ever gone around here.

“It's been a productive test and we've accomplished a lot,” he continued. “We still have some work to do obviously, looking at the lap times, but on race pace we're not too far off.

"We didn't need a race simulation today. We can bang out 20 laps if we need to and I know what we are capable of."

Spies seemed comfortable in the 2min 1.5sec range during his (5-6 lap) hard-tyre runs on Thursday morning. That is roughly a few tenths behind man-to-beat Stoner's average during his 16-lap Thursday afternoon simulation.

“I think the base setting of the bike is really good," said Spies. "We just need to figure out a different set-up for qualifying to make use of the softer tyres.

“The softer tyre didn't help us here quite as much as the Hondas. But when you race here you have to run the hard tyre anyway.

“So at the end of the test it doesn't look super-great on paper, but if you look at what would happen in a race situation we're a lot closer to the front than it looks.

“The Hondas are definitely working well, but we've only been to one circuit so far. So I'm not too worried at this moment,” added the 2009 World Superbike champion.

Spies, like factory team-mate and reigning world champion Jorge Lorenzo (seventh, +1.338s), has one main request for Yamaha.

“It's pretty clear really, we just need to work on a little more power,” said Spies.

The third and final 2011 MotoGP pre-season test takes place at Qatar from March 13-14.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Spies, Sepang MotoGP tests, 22-24 February 2011
Jorge Lorenzo, Mercedes AMG Petronas, Silverstone [Credit: Monster Energy]
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Lorenzo, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016

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DW - Unregistered

February 25, 2011 8:58 AM

Racing is always a different scenario. The Yamaha's power issues wont be so noticeable when they can slipstream, & if the Yamaha's are ahead in the corners then the Honda's new gear-change system isnt going to help them accelerate any faster than the Yamaha ahead. Then factor in that Dani & Casey are not big fans of handlebar-to-handlebar racing, & both Spies & Jorge are ... & we could have some good battles.



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