The Ducati MotoGP Team ended a four-day spell at the Estoril circuit today with a testing session that took place in warm and sunny conditions, with track temperatures reaching 40ºC.
Stoner worked hard all day and ended the session satisfied with his progress after setting a consistent pace in the 1’37s on race tyres and concluding an intense programme of development in positive fashion. The World Champion now returns home to Australia for a well-earned rest before heading on to China for the fourth Grand Prix of the season on May 4th.
Melandri also spent a long time on track today, making the most of the time available to work on his GP8 and choosing not to try out any qualifying rubber as he focused exclusively on improving his race setting.
Casey Stoner (Ducati MotoGP Team), fastest lap on race tyres: 1’37.613; fastest lap on qualifying tyres: 1’37.333 (77 laps)
"I’m happy with the work we’ve done today. We modified a few things that made the bike a little less nervous over the bumps and allowed me to lap in 1’37s with more consistency than I managed yesterday. We also tried a few new tyres and found some interesting things. At the end of the day I tried two qualifiers but I preferred not to try a third one because it had been a long day and it was pointless taking risks when I was tired. I’m really happy with the work we’ve done and the pace we found. I’m sure the improvements will help us when we get to China but now I’m just looking forward to heading back to Australia and spend some time relaxing with the family."
Marco Melandri (Ducati MotoGP Team), fastest lap on race tyres: 1’39.725 (78 laps)
"Today we tried a different weight distribution to try and improve the grip, braking and corner entry. Things have improved a little and I’m quite pleased. We need to continue and be positive, work together and I’m sure we’ll find the way forward."
Today lap times
1. Dani PEDROSA (Honda) 1:36.455
2. Valentino ROSSI (Yamaha) 1:36.707
3. Andrea DOVIZIOSO (Honda) 1:36.791
4. Nicky HAYDEN (Honda) 1:36.928
5. Colin EDWARDS (Yamaha) 1:37.145
6. Randy DE PUNIET (Honda) 1:37.146
7. Casey STONER (Ducati) 1:37.330
8. Chris VERMEULEN (Suzuki) 1:37.617
9. Shinya NAKANO (Honda) 1:37.725
10. James TOSELAND (Yamaha) 1:37.767
11. Loris CAPIROSSI (Suzuki) 1:37.781
12. Alex DE ANGELIS (Honda) 1:37.782
13. John HOPKINS (Kawasaki) 1:38.023
14. Toni ELIAS (Ducati) 1:38.695
15. Anthony WEST (Kawasaki) 1:39.065
16. Sylvain GUINTOLI (Ducati) 1:39.223
17. Marco MELANDRI (Ducati) 1:39.725