Good start for Pedrosa at Laguna Seca despite minor crash
The three Repsol Honda riders started with an excellent level in the two first free sessions held today on the Laguna Seca circuit in California. After the first session, dominated by Casey Stoner, the times were faster in the second, which finished with Dani Pedrosa setting the second best time, followed by Stoner and Dovizioso, in a session led by Jorge Lorenzo.
The special ambiance of the United States Grand Prix, which one more year held a spectacular track of Laguna Seca, the premiere category of the Motorcycling World Championship, saw the Repsol Honda Team riders become the most powerful team of the category, completing three of the four first positions of the classification. Despite the difference of temperature from the previous years, from between 18ºC and 22ºC in the first and second session, the tarmac reached 48ºC, allowing for a positive first contact in the American track.
The first free practice saw a dominant Casey Stoner taking the initiative since the beginning. The Australian of the Repsol Honda Team did 19 laps, outperforming by 102 thousandths his team mate, Dani Pedrosa, who suffered a minor crash at the end of the peculiar Laguna Seca straight —who has a left-hand corner where the riders don’t leave the gas—. Pedrosa braked too late and when he reached the gravel and with the Honda nearly stopped, the Repsol rider lost control and fell, although with no physical nor material damages. 611 thousandths behind Stoner finished Andrea Dovizioso, who was finally fifth after 23 laps to the short American track.
In the second session, before the track reached the optimal grip level, times were reduced and Pedrosa, Stoner and Dovizioso were again among the fastest. The protagonist of last Sunday’s podium Germany dominated again the time sheet, where Jorge Lorenzo finished first, followed just 141 thousandths later by Dani Pedrosa, who also outperformed Casey Stoner in 34 thousandths. After him, three tenths from the Australian’s time, finished Andrea Dovizioso —1 minute, 22 seconds and 537 thousandths—, thus completing a very good day for the Repsol Honda Team in Laguna Seca.
Dani Pedrosa FP1 – 1:22.402, 21 laps, 76 km. FP2 – 1:22.197, 24 laps, 87 km.
“The second session in the afternoon was pretty interesting, we made some changes on the bike and tried the race tyre, looking to set up the bike to absorb the bumps of which there are many in this track and they especially affect the front.
The grip was a little poor today and it was also very windy out there, so we haven’t yet found the perfect ride. In the morning we tried the softer compound and it had a little more grip, and in the afternoon, with the race tyre, it was more difficult to find grip, but perhaps the track conditions were not perfect, so we are hoping to keep improving tomorrow”.
Source: Repsol Honda