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MotoGP - Repsol Honda Progress Halted By Rain - February 16th 2006


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    The test had to be stopped twice in this third day due to the heavy rain showers.

    Today has been the less productive of the three test days scheduled by the Repsol Honda Team on the Malaysian track of Sepang. The morning received the riders with a covered and threatening sky. Eventually, at 13.45h, a short but intense downpour interrupted the work of teams and riders, leaving the track completely flooded. It was time to take a break and recover strength having a light lunch. In the afternoon, the MotoGP riders resumed work in the Malaysian circuit at around 16.00h, and thanks to the typical high temperatures of the country the track got completely dry.

    However, the weather insisted in playing the leading role today and again, shortly before 17.00h the rain poured down again leaving the track like a puddle. With less than one hour left for the end of the tests, there were two options: testing on the wet to tune the rain settings or finish. Dani Pedrosa took the second option and decided to finish the last tests in Sepang of the 2006 season. A meeting with his technicians that lasted more than half an hour to draw the final conclusions of these three days set the full stop of the tests. Dani and his team will be back on the Malaysian circuit on 10 September already immersed in the 2006 season, on the occasion of the Malaysian Grand Prix.

    Meanwhile North American rider and Pedrosas team-mate Nicky Hayden decided to continue despite the rain showers of the afternoon. Focussed on the evolution of the RC211V 2006 and surrounded by a crowd of HRC technicians and engineers, Hayden kept on working on the three bikes he had in his garage throughout the tests. However, Nicky felt a bit frustrated because of the wet end of the test which hindered him, just as his team-mate Pedrosa from carrying out all the tests scheduled by his team.

    The riders of the Repsol Honda Team will get on their Honda RC211V the next time in Barcelona, on the occasion of the MotoGP Tests, the first official tests of the 2006 season, to be staged on 3 to 5 March.

    Dani Pedrosa: "Well, let's say that in general terms it went well until yesterday noon, but that was it. We lost a lot of time this morning waiting for the track to get dry, then it rained, then it got dried again. so we finally weren't able to do anything else. The first day and a half was really profitable, but then things changed and we were not able to do all the tests we had planned. The next tests are going to be in Barcelona; we'll see how it goes. Let's hope that everything works out, because now we're going to face much lower temperatures than here, so we'll see. Now we'll have to fly over to Japan for one week because there's the Honda Party for the start of the season. Then I'll go to have some rest in London, before moving on to Barcelona to the next test."

    Nicky Hayden: "To be honest, this has been a hard and frustrating day because we have tested a lot of bikes with different configurations and options, but the rain held us back too much. Fortunately we got well prepared people around here and that makes everything a lot easier. We've been working hard, but we were unlucky with the weather and therefore we haven't been able to resolve all our doubts, although I'm sure that we'll be ready for the start of the season.