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  • Moto GP - Donington

    Rossi And Checa Set Leading Pace At Donington

    From Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha
    British Grand Prix Donington Park, Great Britain Friday 23rd July

    Despite the drenching that the 4.023km Donington Park circuit took overnight, today's first day of qualifying for the British Grand Prix provided near perfect track conditions, with Yamaha riders Valentino Rossi and Carlos Checa fully up to pace on their YZR-M1 machines. Rossi took second place on the provisional grid thanks to his best lap of 1'29.584s, with Checa an eventual fourth on 1'29.833s.

    After only eight minutes of qualifying Rossi had beaten the previous best lap of the Donington circuit with a time of 1'30.509s. The young Italian exploited the smoother and slightly more grippy resurfaced tarmac on the schizophrenic track layout, which features one slow section riddled with hairpins and the rest a series of sweeping undulations. Rossi's final fastest time, which left him second out of the 24 entrants, was only 0.289s off the pace of provisional pole man Nicky Hayden (Honda), and just 0.097 seconds faster than third placed rider Loris Capirossi (Ducati).

    Rossi also became the first ever rider into the 1'29 mark at Donington, taking his YZR-M1 to a time of 1'29.896s mid way through the session, and he was joined shortly afterwards by team-mate Checa, who was himself on the provisional pole position for a short time after dipping under the 1'29 mark.

    Valentino Rossi (2nd, 1'29.584)
    "I went quite well today, I have a good rhythm and the bike feels good here, but we've had a few set-up problems. We have had much better grip because the bumpy bits of the track feel better than last year but I need to try some other tyres tomorrow. We have done a lot of work here, our first time at this circuit with the M1, and we are up front. Hayden looks good on qualifying tyres and well done to Loris, I'm happy to see him up front again. This track is good for me, technical and difficult, and with more work on the set-up and the tyres tomorrow we will be on even better form. We don't want to change much though, just a few small points. I would like at the least to be on the podium this weekend, this is our objective."

    Carlos Checa (4th, 1'29.833)
    "Not so bad on the first day but we still have to work with the tyres for the race because with our rear end stability it is difficult to keep the pace. In the fast areas we do not have such good rear stability to be able to be fast. In the rest of the track it is OK. The track surface is flatter, less bumps but I think the grip level is similar, nothing noticeably better. We need some more wider rumble strips in some areas however. I think someone forgot that."

    Davide Brivio - Team Director
    "Normally we can go quite well on Friday so now we have to continue at a high standard. It was not so bad because both riders have a good pace. Valentino has been very good and Carlos is similar to all the other top guys. If we can continue in this pace and continue to find the right settings hopefully we can stay in the top group. For sure the track surface has influenced the lap times compared to last year, but the bike and tyres have improved. So this maybe is the reason for a bigger step than normal. I think they did a good job on the track, I hope they can upgrade the facilities here soon as well."

    1. Nicky Hayden (USA) Repsol Honda Team 1'29.295
    2. VALENTINO ROSSI (ITA) Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha 1'29.584
    3. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Ducati Marlboro Team 1'29.681

    4. CARLOS CHECA (SPA) Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha 1'29.833
    5. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Telefonica Movistar Honda 1'29.910
    6. Colin Edwards (USA) Telefonica Movistar Honda 1'29.919

  • #2
    UPDATED 8)

    Ducati Marlboro Team riders Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss got their British GP weekend off to a storming start in warm, breezy weather at Donington Park this afternoon. Capirossi rode a superb session, grabbing pole for a second or two in the final moments before slipping to third, just 0.289 seconds adrift of provisional pole-sitter Nicky Hayden. Troy Bayliss also performed strongly, inside the top six during the closing stages and ending up ninth, just 0.577 seconds off his team-mate. The often-criticised Donington track has been resurfaced for this year, although opinion is split over the new tarmac's traction properties. However, the surface is much smoother than before, the main reason today's best lap was a massive 1.4 seconds inside last year's pole position time.

    "As we've said before, we are on our way back," said Ducati Marlboro Team director Livio Suppo who is hoping to witness the team's first podium result of 2004 soon. "At the last few races our riders have shown some impressive pace but we've lacked the luck to get any good results apart the 4th position of Loris in Brazil. For sure if we keep working like this, we shouldn't have long to wait. Both today's sessions were good for us. Loris and Troy did a good job on race tyres and Loris did a very, very good job on qualifiers."

    Capirossi Third, 0.386 Seconds Off Pole
    Loris Capirossi was back where he belongs at Donington today - up front. And the Ducati Marlboro Team rider, who last weekend was in the hunt for a podium finish in Germany before he slid off, is certain that tomorrow he will continue his fight for his first front row start of the year. "I'm happy with the provisional front row, but we still need to work on the bike," said Capirossi. "Most important of all, today's result proves you should never give up, and it shows that both the team and the factory have been working very hard, so my thanks to everyone for working with the same spirit. As far as the bike goes we still lack a bit of feeling, but I think we can improve that for tomorrow. The track seems less grippy than last year but much smoother."

    Bayliss Chases Feeling At The Park
    Troy Bayliss was looking good for a slot on the provisional second row at Donington this afternoon but ended up just three tenths shy to place ninth quickest. His main concern tomorrow is to improve front-end feeling so he can attack the turns with more aggression.

    "The new surface is definitely smoother, it's not so bumpy," said Bayliss. "The grip isn't bad but it seems to give the tyres a hard time. This afternoon I put some more laps on a tyre I'd already used this morning, and it wasn't too bad, but we need to do some more laps before we really know what we can run. Overall I'm fairly happy, though I'm struggling with feeling from the front, so we'll play around with the front and see where that gets us tomorrow."


    • #3
      Rossi Reigns Supreme In Donington Qualifying

      From Yamha Racing
      Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi secured pole position for Sunday's 30-lap MotoGP race at Donington with a superb series of high-paced laps, setting a best ever time around the 4.023km Donington track of 1'28.720. His lap beat the previous qualifying best by over two seconds. His team-mate Carlos Checa improved on his Friday time but was forced to settle for seventh position with a lap of 1'29.329, after a front-end slide during what might have been his best lap.

      Rossi, second for most of the final hour long session before being deposed by Troy Bayliss (Ducati) and then a forceful Checa, promptly put in the first ever sub-1'28s Donington lap with eight minutes remaining. He further improved his time to 1'28.879 and finally 1'28.720, taking pole position by 0.432s over one of his main championship rivals, Sete Gibernau (Honda). Loris Capirossi (Ducati) was the third fastest rider, completing the front row.

      Riding in near-perfect track conditions, Checa made an almost immediate improvement on his Friday time as the session began, setting a 1'29.834s lap time and putting himself fourth for the majority of the hour. He temporarily displaced Rossi from second place with a lap of 1'29.408, before the Italian rider and world championship leader reasserted himself at the top, finishing the session as the only rider in the 1'28s mark.

      VALENTINO ROSSI (1st, 1'28.720)
      "I am in pole position and maybe it was possible to make the lap time a little bit better because I made a small mistake with the gears on one corner. I put it into fourth instead of third. I lost a little bit but anyway we are on pole. I am very happy because my Yamaha works very well here, it worked well with the qualifying tyre and is also good with the race tyre. Now we need to make the tyre choice for tomorrow. I have two or three possible race tyres and for sure we need to start with a harder tyre. The setting is good and I love this track, I have fans all around here. I hope that we have good weather tomorrow."

      CARLOS CHECA (7th, 1'29.329)
      "We went out to improve our pace in the first two split times and I think we have done that. I am satisfied with that but our position for the start tomorrow is not the best. It would have been better to be one or even two rows higher but in the end I almost lost the front going downhill, on the lap before I did my best time. I think that was my real chance on a new tyre. I think it was just a bit too much and I lost some tenths. This is only qualifying and I did not want to upset the bike. We know that when we put the bike over to maximum lean we need more front traction. We have made some changes for the race and the improvements we made through qualifying have been very good. For the race we are not so bad, but it will be a long race over 30 laps. I have a choice of two possible race tyres but already I have made my mind up which one to use."

      "I'm happy with that because were still able to remain in front on Saturday and Valentino has been in the top places over both days. The lap time was fantastic and we know he could do even better again – unbelievable. He did a great job and he is in good shape for the race because his pace is good. I really hope it stays dry because otherwise we will waste the great job we have made in these two days. Carlos is seventh but I'm sure he can keep the pace of the top guys. We are aiming to get both riders on the podium. Each team and the Yamaha engineers did a great job."


      • #4
        Ducati Men Go 3rd & 4th Quickest

        Saturday July 24 2004
        Ducati Team riders Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss today scored their best qualifying performance of the year so far, putting their Desmosedici GP4s third and fourth on the grid for tomorrow's British GP. In cool, cloudy conditions the pair were in the hunt for their first pole position of the year, their pace on both race and qualifying confirming once again the team's return to form following a luckless run of races. This is only the second GP at which both riders have been fully equipped with Ducati's new Twin Pulse engine, which uses different cylinder firing intervals to produce more rider-friendly horsepower, a vital ingredient to fast lap times at a tight, tortuous track like Donington Park.

        "A very good weekend so far," smiled Ducati Marlboro Team director Livio Suppo. "This is the first time this season that both our guys have been very competitive on both race and qualifying tyres. It's great to be back on the front row, though if this had been last year, both guys would've been up there! (New-for-2004 grid regulations specify three riders per row instead of four per row). The times are incredibly close, so the difference between rows one and two is tiny. Today shows that we are heading in the right direction - our current engine/chassis package is good and the more we know it, the more we can get out of it. Thanks once again to everyone in the team and at Ducati Corse, as well as to our technical partners Michelin and Shell Advance."

        Capirossi: Our 2004 Season Begins Here!
        Loris Capirossi stormed to third fastest in this afternoon's final qualifying session to give himself his first front-row start of 2004. The Italian Ducati Marlboro Team man was in stunning form as he rode his GP4 to within 0.489 seconds of pole position, good enough to give him plenty of confidence for tomorrow's race, round nine of this year's 16-race MotoGP World Championship.

        "I'm really happy - this is where our season really starts!" said Capirossi. "I've been able to fully exploit the Michelin qualifying tyres, and it seems that Troy is also going very, very fast. Even so, I'm not 100 per cent happy with my machine set-up. We need to work at improving a few things in morning warm-up, but overall I'm very happy. This result is so important for everyone involved with this team."

        Bayliss Flying, Just 0.005 Seconds Off Row One
        Ducati Marlboro Team rider Troy Bayliss ran as high as second during this afternoon's hour-long outing, eventually ending up fourth, a tantalising 0.005 seconds away from achieving his first front-row start of 2004. This is only the second GP that Bayliss has had two Twin Pulse engines at his disposal.

        "It's been a while, so I'm pretty happy, things have been going good here since I first hopped on," said the Aussie. "After yesterday we played around with the settings and oil levels inside the forks to give us some more feel from the front. Then we made a couple of changes to the bike after this morning, so in the end we did pretty good with the qualifying tyre, though I think it could've been slightly better. We missed the front row by nothing, but that's what happens when the times are real close. I've done lots of laps on race tyres, which all went good. This is a real scratchers' track, so I'm really looking forward to the race."


        • #5


          • #6
            How good is he :?:

            The man is unstoppable, my money is still on him to win the Championship 8)


            • #7
              Go Rossssssiiiii !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

              So on the eight day, after wasting time faffing about with unimportant guff like heaven & earth & the waters & sky & creatures [& having a wee kip] & man.... God created PSB (GenesiSX-R1000)


              • #8
                "Biaggi rues gearbox problem.
                News - Max Biaggi revealed that a gearbox problem was the reason behind his disappointing performance in the Cinzano British Grand Prix at Donington Park on Sunday. "

                Yer right Maxy, you just lost sight of the leaders and had nobodies good habits to emulate!
                HONDA! F#@ YER!


                • #9
                  News - Max Biaggi revealed that he did not realise there were so many cute riders at the back of the field, He stated "On and off the track, bringing up the rear is what I do best".


                  • #10
                    News - Max Biaggi revealed that he did not realise there were so many cute riders at the back of the field, He stated "On and off the track, bringing up the rear is what I do best".

                    :shock: Hahahah like it 8) Biaggi is a tosser :!: