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'You always learn' - Lorenzo looking inwards
6 March 2013
Having achieved so many of his racing goals, what is the main focus for reigning double MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo ahead of the 2013 season?
Just 25-years-old but already Spain's most successful MotoGP rider - 1999 champion Alex Criville is the country's only other premier-class title winner - Lorenzo is now a four-time champion across all grand prix classes.
Up to ninth on the all-time 500cc/MotoGP win list with 23 victories, one more would put Lorenzo level with Yamaha legend Wayne Rainey. Two more would equal Kevin Schwantz.
Not bad for five seasons in the premier class, all with Yamaha.
And he shows no signs of backing off. During preparations for the 2013 season at Sepang, Lorenzo was the top M1 rider on all six days and set the fastest lap at the second test.
He was also one of the few to deliver energy-sapping race simulations at both visits and, off track, was pushing Yamaha just as hard for further developments to help take on Honda rivals Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez.
"We are faster than last year, but for me it is still not enough. We have to improve more," he declared.
In short, Lorenzo appeared as intense and motivated as ever - and the ultimate goal of 2013 world champion remains the same. However Lorenzo says his main focus is looking inwards, at his own performance, an approach he feels provides the best chance of success.
"I'm not focussed purely on the result," said Lorenzo. "Being world champion is obviously the reason we are all here and the best prize you can get. But to achieve it, it is better to focus on yourself, on improving your little weak points.
"Keep improving yourself as a rider. If you can do that every year, one step more, then it is easier to get the results. You depend on your bike, your team, good or bad luck - but improving your own performance still provides the best opportunity to reach your goals."
He added: "A long time ago I used to struggle at some tracks, but now I'm consistent at almost every track... You always learn. Even on days when the lap time is worse." One person who feels Lorenzo's riding improved noticeably last season is none other than returning team-mate and seven time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi.
"Jorge's style was already good for the M1, coming from 250. Because the M1 is the bike most similar to the 250 two-stroke," explained the Italian, who had partnered Lorenzo during his first three MotoGP seasons.
"But it was very good because during last season he was able to improve his style to adapt more to the M1 and now he rides half-and-half, between a pure 250cc style and the Honda acceleration 'trick' [lifting the bike upright quickly to power out of the corners] like Stoner.
"Jorge is in-between. He makes less than Stoner and Pedrosa in acceleration, but has very good corner speed. He is a mix between the two styles.
"Also our bike you have to ride like this. Our bike you cannot ride like a Honda and the Honda you cannot ride like a Yamaha.
"[Lorenzo's form on the M1] is because he was very strong in 250 and now he has a big experience with this bike. He always rides the M1."
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