Gauloises Yamaha Team riders Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards completed a second day of testing at a hot and humid Sepang circuit, Testing their new 2005-specification YZR-M1s, both riders improved on the times they set yesterday. It was hard work for the entire team, as temperatures reached a maximum of 40 degrees, but both riders finished the day satisfied with the job they had done and now look forward to tomorrow's final day of testing.
Rossi and Edwards continued from where they left off yesterday, once again spending the day refining settings on their M1s as well as testing a variety of Michelin tyres. According to the unofficial lap times, Ducati rider Loris Capirossi was the fastest man on the track for the second day running, setting a time of 2'01.99, whilst Rossi was second fastest once again, completing 55 laps with a best time of 2'02.16. He was followed by Alex Barros (Honda, 2'02.30), Max Biaggi (Honda, 2'02.35) - seemingly well recovered from a broken leg sustained in November - and Kenny Roberts (Suzuki, 2'02.38). Rossi's Yamaha team-mate Edwards completed 62 laps and was sixth fastest with a time of 2'02.48.
Fortuna Yamaha Tech3 riders Toni Elías and Rubén Xaus also continued their testing program at the Sepang circuit. Elías clocked a 2'03.2 after 51 laps, despite the injury to his right hand which he suffered yesterday. His Spanish team-mate Xaus set a best time of 2'03.40 after 62 laps, having crashed early in the session without injury.
Valentino Rossi (Gauloises Yamaha Team) - 2nd, 2'02.16
"I am quite happy with the work we've done today. We worked on suspension and set-up and the bike gave us some good data and a good feeling. Yesterday we went the wrong way with some things but today we've made some modifications and we've found the right way forward. We've worked mainly on making the bike more agile; trying to make it more like the 2004 bike in this area, and we had a really good run of improvements this morning."
Colin Edwards (Gauloises Yamaha Team) - 6th, 2'02.48
"We sorted out our first-day teething problems and I'm feeling much happier about everything. I'm so tired tonight, but we knew we'd have to work hard! Overnight we had some ideas and they seem to have worked; now it feels like we're going in the right direction. The most important thing is confidence in the front of the bike, and I had more today. Overall now it doesn't feel so different from the old bike and the whole package is good. Tomorrow we'll play around some more, probably do a race simulation and hopefully make some more improvements."
Davide Brivio, Gauloises Yamaha Team Director
"It was a productive day for both riders. We spent a lot of time testing tyres for Michelin and we made a good job of this. Before that we were able to improve the bike settings compared to yesterday, so we are on the way. Tomorrow is the final day so we hope that we can continue this work and finish on a good note."
Toni Elías (Fortuna Yamaha Tech3) - 8th, 2'03.20
"Much better! Yesterday we were basically riding to get used to the M1 and solve a few aspects related to the bike and my physical condition. Today we were able to adjust the engine braking a little more and the suspension, which helped me to feel much more comfortable on the M1. All that with my injured little finger! It hurts a lot, and to be honest this morning I thought I would only be able to manage a couple of laps. The company that makes my gloves came up with something that allowed me to go out and ride without too much discomfort. My right glove is actually two sizes bigger than my left! In general I feel really at home with the team. Nobody is putting pressure on me and bit by bit we're getting better - tomorrow hopefully more so!"
Rubén Xaus (Fortuna Yamaha Tech3) - 9th, 2'03.40
"In the afternoon everything went much better. Since I'm still trying to get to know the M1 and everybody wants to try different things - especially me - we ended up a bit lost. After the crash the Yamaha engineers came to the box and told us to start from scratch again. It was the right decision because in the afternoon I felt much more comfortable and the M1 ran much better, allowing me to lap at a 2'03.40. I carried on riding without really testing anything because the most important thing right now is to adapt and to get to know the YZR M1".
Testing times - day two
- Loris Capirossi (Ducati): 2'01.98 (60 laps)
- Valentino Rossi (Gauloises Yamaha Team): 2'02.16 (55)
- Alex Barros: (Honda): 2'02.307 (77)
- Max Biaggi (Honda): 2'02.35
- Kenny Roberts (Suzuki): 2'02.38
- Colin Edwards (Gauloises Yamaha Team): 2'02.48 (62)
- Troy Bayliss: (Honda) 2'03.918 (52)
- Toni Elías: (Fortuna Yamaha Tech3): 2'03.20 (51)
- Rubén Xaus (Fortuna Yamaha Tech3): 2'03.40 (62)