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Chatter the cause of miserable race for Spies

“We know the bike is competitive and can beat Honda, we just have to fix mine” – Ben Spies.
By Stephen English

Ben Spies endured a miserable opening to the 2012 MotoGP season in Qatar, with the Factory Yamaha rider badly affected by chatter throughout Sunday's 22 lap race.

Yamaha team director, Massimo Meregalli, explained that the problem started to occur in the morning warm-up and that the team could not find a solution in time for the race.

"The chatter suddenly appeared on Ben's bike in warm-up and we couldn't solve it before the race," said Meregalli. "We're not sure why it was yet, but the engineers will work on it and we will try to ensure we have the problem solved by Jerez.”

Having qualified fourth, Spies had hopes of a podium but after just a handful of laps it was clear just how badly he was suffering. The Texan, sixth on lap one, had plummeted to eleventh by lap 10 of 22, where he remained at the finish.

Spies said, “From the parade lap and the warm-up lap for the race it felt like I had 'knobblies' [motocross tyres] on the bike the whole time."

With no confidence in the bike it was clear to the former World Superbike champion that damage limitation was his only option.

“I decided that I didn't want to trash three suits in a row and just tried to get some points,” commented Spies, who suggested on Twitter that bike damage from his practice falls had contributed to his race-day handling problems.

Either way, the weekend was one to forget. “It was pretty much a waste of a weekend, but the good point is that we know the bike is competitive. We know that it can beat Honda we just have to fix mine.”

Fellow Yamaha riders Jorge Lorenzo (1st), Cal Crutchlow (4th) and Andrea Dovizioso (5th) all finished in the top five at Qatar.

Spies now plans to recover the lost round at round two in Jerez, where the final MotoGP test was held in late March.

“We'll go to Jerez and hopefully have some new bikes which are working good. I feel good [about Jerez], we'll just know in a couple of weeks when we get to ride there. I'm confident in the bike, when its working good. We just need to get some stuff figured out and fixed for sure.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Spies, Rossi, Qatar MotoGP Race 2012
Lorenzo, German MotoGP race 2017
Crutchlow, German MotoGP race 2017
Dovizioso, Lorenzo, Aleix Espargaro German MotoGP race 2017
Marquez, Pedrosa, Lorenzo German MotoGP race 2017
Lorenzo, Iannone, German MotoGP 2017
Crutchlow, German MotoGP 2017
Rossi, Dovizioso, Vinales German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, German MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, Iannone, Petrucci German MotoGP 2017
Zarco, Lorenzo, Iannone German MotoGP 2017
Aleix Espargaro, Crutchlow German MotoGP 2017
Vinales, Rossi, Dovizioso German MotoGP 2017
Rossi, Vinales, Dovizioso German MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, German MotoGP race 2017
Dovizioso, German MotoGP race 2017

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Dynamic Donkey - Unregistered

April 09, 2012 11:31 AM

If you watch the race again it is perfectly clear that there was something not right with Bens bike.No need to MAKE UP excuses.If he says he was suffering with chatter,then he was suffering with Chatter! But as usual,there are people on here who will say it is an excuse.Because the have obviously ridden a Motogp bike themselves and know all about it!


April 09, 2012 12:03 PM

bring out the excuse book? really! Ben is so much better than 11th, his bike is so much better than 11th. . .so when he finishes 11th, isnt it logical that there is a valid technical reason for his result! . . .it may be wise to look up the definitions of 'excuse' and 'reason', then add some common sense or logic to your argument before clicking 'send'!

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