Misano pole sitter Jorge Lorenzo believes that this year's Yamaha is a more competitive package than last season.

However he feels the progress has been masked by the type of tyres made available at each round.

Bridgestone designed stiffer, more heat resistant rubber for this season - which Lorenzo has struggled with. However Bridgestone modifies the tyres to offer more edge grip at less intense circuits, which suits Lorenzo more.

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It is that type of tyre that is available at Misano this weekend, where Lorenzo claimed Yamaha's first pole of the season and team-mate Valentino Rossi his first front row of the year.

Lorenzo, who has finished runner-up at the last three rounds, said: "Last time at Silverstone the bike was good, the problem was the tyre. All the Yamaha riders had big problems. Finally we made a very good weekend and improved a lot. That was our salvation, without the big improvement we couldn't have fought for victory.

"So it was not our real potential because of the tyre. But here with the normal tyre - or more soft on the sides - we can do our best potential at this moment.

"Maybe with the tyre from last year we could be a little more comfortable but there is not so much difference and we can take profit from the improvement in braking this year. We have lost a little bit in corner speed, but in general the bike is quicker than last year and that is why we can be very strong."