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Shangaï: bilan des teams

Bilan mitigé pour Kawasaki :

Shinya Nakano: #56 – Tenth – (2’01.098)
"The fourth row of the grid is not the best position for the race. I made a couple of mistakes on my qualifying lap; I braked too hard at the end of the straight and then lost the rear-end with some slides in the hairpin. But I have collected a lot of tyre data, so I hope it is hot and dry for the race, because I think I have a good tyre option from Bridgestone. On the bike we need to adjust the engine brake settings, I’m not comfortable with it at the moment. The track is okay, it is tight in parts but I’m getting used to it."

Olivier Jacque: #19 – Fifteenth – (2’02.072)
"It was a big surprise for me to experience the incredible grip levels and performance of the latest soft qualifying tyres, which have improved dramatically since the last time I raced in Grand Prix. Getting the best from a qualifier is all about confidence, so I was under a lot of pressure in this session. I don’t think I got the maximum from the soft tyre, but I’m happy with the chassis balance and engine for the race. With three first gear, and some long, slow corners this is not a very fluid track for MotoGP bikes; it is not easy to get a lot a pleasure from this layout."

Ichiro Yoda: Technical Director
"We need more time, especially to find the correct engine brake settings. In some corners the braking force is too strong, but we have only had this new engine for three months and we are still trying to understand all the data. For the race it seems we now have a very good tyre option, both front and rear, from Bridgestone, so I’m not so worried about that."

Carton plein du côté de Honda Gresini :

Sete Gibernau stopped the clock at 1’59”710, knocking almost three seconds off his time in yesterday morning’s dry first free practice session. His impressive improvement was enough for pole position, his first of the season, and he will now look to win the first ever race to be held at Shanghai, as he did at Qatar last season.

Marco Melandri’s performances are improving with each Grand Prix that goes by, the Italian returning to the front row of the g! rid today and confident of challenging for the podium as he did in the opening round of the season at Jerez.

SETE GIBERNAU (1st, 1’59”710):
“It’s good to see that we’re competitive at yet another track and particularly here, where we arrived without any previous data to work from. I think it’s a difficult circuit but once again we’ve been at the maximum level. In the end we managed to improve the set-up of the bike quite a lot and, without doubt, that is thanks to the hard work being put in by my team, together with Honda and Michelin. We’re doing a great job, which hasn’t been reflected in the race results yet, but I know that everything will be back to normal soon and we will be rewarded for our efforts.”

MARCO MELANDRI (2nd, 1’59”873):
“I’ve enjoyed myself at this circuit ever since we rode it for the first time on Friday morning. It’s a really different type of track but we ! had a good setting straight away and we’ve just worked to improve on that, eventually setting the second fastest time today, which is fantastic. I’m back on the front row and I’m going out to win tomorrow, even though I know it will be difficult because a lot will depend on the weather. It was a good battle with my team-mate Sete at the end of the session.”

Soucis d’adhérence chez Yamaha :

Valentino ROSSI (2’02.677 – 39 tours)

« Nous avons essayé de nombreuses choses aujourd’hui, mais j’ai toujours des problèmes surtout à cause d’un manque de ‘feeling’ sur l’avant. Cela entraîne un mauvais fonctionnement du pneu. Nous avons fait quelques petits changements sur la fourche et avons encore des choses à tester lors du warm-up. Après les qualifications j’ai eu une longue réunion avec mon équipe pour définir où nous pouvions faire des progrès. Ce n’est pas idéal de n’être que sixième, mais nous ne pouvions pas viser la première ligne. Si tout va bien demain, y compris lors du warm-up, je peux viser une place sur le podium. Ce sera une course réellement difficile, sur un circuit aussi exigeant. Je pense que pilotes et machines vont être mis à rude épreuve. »

Colin EDWARDS (2’01.401 – 21 tours)

« C’est la première fois que nous roulons sur ce circuit et après la journée humide d’hier nous avons pu améliorer aujourd’hui le réglage général de la moto. J’ai finalement trouvé

un ‘set-up’ qui me convenait pour la course, mais avec lequel je n’ai pas pu utiliser mon pneu de qualification, c’est pourquoi j’ai fait mon meilleur temps en pneus de course.

C’est encourageant car je peux rouler à un bon rythme, mais en partant de la cinquième ligne, ce ne sera pas facile de se faufiler dans le peloton, surtout sur ce circuit sinueux.

Le manque de temps nous a empêché de faire un test d’endurance, il y a donc un gros point d’interrogation pour tout le monde sur ce qui va se passer lors de la seconde moitié du Grand Prix. J’espère que je pourrai fausser compagnie à quelques amis en début de course, me rapprocher des leaders autant que je peux et voir ce qui se passera. »

Davide BRIVIO – Directeur de l’équipe

« Ce ne fut pas une bonne journée pour aucun de nos pilotes, mais je pense que Valentino et Colin peuvent rouler à un bon rythme dans le peloton de tête. Ce sera difficile pour Colin en partant si loin, mais ses temps prouvent qu’il a le potentiel pour faire un bon résultat si les conditions restent sèches. Bien sûr il y a aussi des chances pour qu’il pleuve et là personne ne sait ce qui se passera. Nous avons encore quelques doutes sur les réglages des motos, mais il nous reste vingt minutes de warm-up et sommes confiants pour trouver des solutions. »

Première et troisième ligne pour Ducati :

Loris Capirossi turned in a stunning qualifying lap in the closing stages of this afternoon’s qualifying session to hold pole position until the final moments when he slipped to third. That was still good enough to give the Ducati Marlboro Team man an all-important front-row start for tomorrow’s race.
 "I’m really happy with that, though I know the race will be more difficult," said the gritty little Italian. "The ankle I cracked at Jerez wasn’t a problem today, so I hope it doesn’t cause me any serious trouble over full-race distance. This track is pretty difficult, especially the really slow first section, but the bike’s going well, it seems to like the place. I tried three different race tyres and there’s one that seems really good. I’m expecting a nice fight because there’s a few riders really close on lap times."

After dominating this morning’s free practice, Carlos Checa led the first half of the session but slipped down the order as he focused successfully on choosing the best race tyres for tomorrow’s race, round three of the 2005 MotoGP series. With a light drizzle falling on some parts of the track in the early stages of the session, the Ducati Marlboro Team man went out with his first qualifying tyre after a few laps to set a lightning-fast pace. He ended up seventh, just 0.081 seconds off row two.
 "We fitted a qualifier early, in case it rained some more," explained the Spaniard. "After that we focused on trying different things for the race. Then when I did fit another qualifier near the end, I lost the rear then spoiled another lap but I ran into some traffic. I know I can run a good pace, so we just need to get a good start. I feel comfortable on the bike and it’s nice to know I’ve got the fastest bike on the track. I’ve never been as fast as I was today, except in a plane! Braking into the hairpin at the end of the main straight is amazing – from 343kmh to 55kmh in 350 metres!"

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