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MotoGP - The Repsol Honda Team Riders Make Tracks At Sepang - January 24th 2006


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    Dani Pedrosa squeezes the last minute out of the track time despite the rain; he and team mate Nicky Hayden are again among the fastest at Sepang.

    The second day of private training for the MotoGP teams at Malaysia's Sepang circuit was rain-washed from 4.30 pm until the end of the scheduled session. This was no doubt a good chance for Dani Pedrosa to get used to riding on slick pavement with his new bike. He donned his rain-gear and took to the track again under a steady drizzle, followed solely by the Bridgestone test driver Shinichi Itoh. The remaining riders, including team-mate Nicky Hayden, all abandoned the track an hour and a half before the scheduled finish.

    The Repsol Honda Team picked up where they left off yesterday under sunny skies, with the idea of chalking up more kilometres. Dani Pedrosa completed 47 laps - 260 km, on a dry track, while team mate Nicky Hayden finished 65 - 360 km. With more laps, Hayden focussed on constant chassis and suspension testing and settings on the two bikes he worked with all day. For Pedrosa, the second day was practically a repeat of the previous, getting used to the new bike in dry and wet conditions.

    Dani rode a total of 11 laps - 61 km - in the rain, to get a feel of the bike's handling and response on a wet track. Pedrosa rode on a wet track during the team's training at Sepang last November, but the conditions were not as harsh.

    Nicky Hayden said: "This was the second day of training and we've been testing different chassis and settings options. In the afternoon we spent some time on the tyres brought in by Michelin. That's when the rain set in and we decided to stop, although there was still some testing to do. The rest of the day went fine, so on the whole we can say it was a positive session. My pace was much better than yesterday's; I was a lot more consistent and felt much better on the bike. There are a few new team members working with me this time round, and from what I've seen, I think they're going to be of great help. Everyone on the team is keen on working hard so I can give the best of myself".

    Dani Pedrosa said: "Today was a little bit like yesterday, except for the rain at the end of the day. We had scheduled to test a few new things, but have had to leave them for tomorrow. On the other had, we had the chance to ride again in wet conditions, and it's been positive. In any case I need more wet track experience, especially in this category. I felt like riding even though nobody else did. There was a bit more rain than the last time we were here, but my timing was similar. We've improved a bit, but I can't use my time as a reference since nobody else rode with me. I finished eleven or twelve laps, and although it wasn't bad for the first time this year, I could do better. I feel I was a bit more consistent and didn't get as tired as I did yesterday, and though I'm still a bit stiff, I'm feeling better on the bike all the time".