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Positive signs for Rossi in Portuguese GP, misfortune for Hayden

The Portuguese Grand Prix saw the Ducati Team improving with Valentino Rossi and unfortunate with Nicky Hayden. After two days of working on his GP12’s settings, the Italian lapped at a pace that was both relatively fast and very consistent, eventually finishing in seventh place, which is his best result of the season so far.
Nicky Hayden, on the other hand, had to just try make it to the finish due to an electrical problem with his bike’s ECU, which was subject to interference from a radio signal near the track. As a result, all of the electronic calibrations were out of phase around the circuit, making riding extremely challenging. The American nonetheless rode with great determination to an eleventh-place finish. Tomorrow the Ducati Team will remain in Portugal for a one-day test, with hopes that the rain forecasts turn out to be wrong so that development can continue on the GP12.
Valentino Rossi (Ducati Team) 7th
“It went a bit better this time, in the sense that we started from a better base on Friday and we managed to prepare for today over the course of the weekend. I was able to approach the race knowing what to expect from the bike, and I therefore managed to push harder and get a little closer to the limit. The first laps were decent. I moved up a couple of positions and then I maintained a consistent pace, doing times that we expected to do. We can say that we took advantage of our current potential, and now we’ll have to work to make another step forward. We must improve on corner exits and on acceleration because right now we’re not able to be as effective as the others due to the fact that we can’t get all of the power to the ground. We have a test tomorrow, and we’ll start working. Anyway, today I even managed to have some fun.”
Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team) 11th
“Starting from the first lap, there was an electrical problem and the bike didn’t know where it was on the track. I tried my best to ride around the problem and not make mistakes. It’s really a shame to work hard all weekend but not be able to take advantage of it with a result in the race. The team did a great job overnight, and I felt so much better this morning in the warm-up. I almost matched my qualifying lap and was pretty consistent. Of course I’m not saying I was going to fight for the win, but it would have been nice to at least have a decent race. We’ll focus on tomorrow’s test now and look forward to the next race at Le Mans.”
Vittoriano Guareschi (Team Manager)
“We managed to work well this weekend, taking full advantage of our dry track time to improve the setup and confirm that we now have a good base setting. Today Vale rode the whole race at close to the same pace as his qualifying time, he made some nice passes, and he was able to push a bit closer to the limit. I think this is a good starting point. We’re really sorry for Nicky because during the race, a radio signal interfered with our ECU’s transponder, forcing him to ride with the electronic calibration out of phase. Riding in those conditions is truly difficult, and he did a great job to finish the race.”

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Ducati tackles challenging Estoril with optimism

American Nicky Hayden will be looking to repeat his front row start at the Portuguese circuit, while Valentino Rossi´s latter-stage race-pace has given him a great starting platform for the weekend´s first practice session. He will also be able to draw on the fact that he is the most successful rider at Estoril, having won the premier-class race on five occasions.

Setting the bike up for this track and its conditions is however never a simple matter, as Ducati´s Jeremy Burgess, Valentino Rossi´s Crew Chief, explains: “At the beginning of the weekend the track is quite dirty.  It´s also an old track, which is quite bumpy, meaning the suspension set-up is very important. We use all the gearbox in Estoril from first gear right through to sixth.”

As well as its surface, the track layout itself provides some interesting challenges for Burgess and the team: “It has a variation of corners and a very long 180 degree corner coming onto the straight, which puts an enormous stress on the rear tyre, and quite a long straightfollowed by the first slow corner. So it has a lot of everything really.You can´t really make a comparison with other circuits because you have to set up for the circuit you´re at. And the weather at the end of the Iberian peninsular in Portugal creates some issues as well, with the wind and sometimes the rain, so we hope for good weather and not too much wind.”

His philosophy for success at any circuit is quite simple: “It´s a combination of having a good rider and a good motorcycle. At the moment we still have a good rider, but we´ve got a lot of work to do on our motorcycle. We´re trying to move forward all the time, but we´ll have to wait and see.”

Rossi, who will continue with the bike setting found just before the Jerez race is upbeat about taking another step in the right direction:“I like the Estoril track. It has some sections that are a bit tricky and the weather can be very unpredictable, but I like to race there. We had a decent race in Portugal last year with the Ducati, and we hope to do the same this Sunday. The plan is to start on Friday with the setting that we used in the race at Jerez, as I think it has some more potential for us to work toward. We’ll see if we can take a step forward and improve our result somewhat.”

Hayden adds: “I can’t say that I love or hate Estoril. It’s a tight track with a little bit of everything, and the wind can be challenging. My favourite part is the fast corner in the back, but the rest of it is pretty normal. I’m looking forward to Friday. We’ll see what the weather’s going to be like, as it’s pretty unpredictable here.”

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Ducati Team returns to the track for Portuguese GP

The Ducati Team has transferred to Portugal for the third round of the MotoGP World Championship, which will take place on Sunday at Circuito Estoril, a track that, despite being notable for having the slowest average speed on the Grand Prix calendar, also includes some very fast sections like Turn 5, which is taken at approximately 200 Km/h (125 mph).

 

In twelve premier-class races at the circuit, Valentino Rossi has won five times and scored some additional podium finishes, while Nicky Hayden’s best finish there was a fourth place in 2007. The team will remain at the track on Monday for a post-race test.

 

VALENTINO ROSSI, Ducati Team
“I like the Estoril track. It has some sections that are a bit tricky and the weather can be very unpredictable, but I like to race there. We had a decent race in Portugal last year with the Ducati, and we hope to do the same this Sunday. The plan is to start on Friday with the setting that we used in the race at Jerez, as I think it has some more potential for us to work toward. We’ll see if we can take a step forward and improve our result somewhat.”

 

NICKY HAYDEN, Ducati Team
“There hasn’t been much time since Jerez, which is good, as I enjoy back-to-back races. I rode to Portugal in the motor home, and it was a really short, easy trip. I can’t say that I love or hate Estoril. It’s a tight track with a little bit of everything, and the wind can be challenging. My favourite part is the fast corner in the back, but the rest of it is pretty normal. I’m looking forward to Friday. We’ll see what the weather’s going to be like, as it’s pretty unpredictable here. What we don’t need is exactly what we had in Jerez: mostly wet sessions and then having to go into a dry race. It’s clear we need the whole weekend to try to sort some things out and put up a better fight on Sunday.”

 

VITTORIANO GUARESCHI, Team Manager
“I wouldn’t be surprised if we find conditions in Portugal to be similar to those we left behind at Jerez, but although we went well in the rain there, we hope for a weekend with nice weather this time, which would allow us to take full advantage of all the available track time. The Estoril GP will be important for confirming that we’re on the right path in terms of the GP12’s setup, with both Vale and Nicky. Then on Monday we’ll have a day of post-race testing during which we can make some more checks as we continue our bike’s development.”

 

ESTORIL CIRCUIT RECORDS

Lap Record: Dani Pedrosa (Honda – 2009), 1:36.937, 155.309 Km/h (96.505 mph)
Best Pole: Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha – 2008), 1:35.715, 157.291 Km/h (97.736 mph)
Track Length: 4.182 km (2.599 mi)
2012 MotoGP Race: 28 laps (117.096 km, 72.760 mi)
2012 MotoGP Race Time: 1:00 p.m. local time

 

2011 Podium: 1st Dani Pedrosa, 2nd Jorge Lorenzo, 3rd Casey Stoner
2011 Pole: Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1:37.161 – 298.3 Km/h (185.4 mph)
2011 Fastest Lap: (27th lap) Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1:37.629 – 154.208 Km/h (95.820 mph)

 

DUCATI TEAM RESULTS AT ESTORIL (BEST FINISH)
2011: 5th (Rossi)
2010: 5th (Hayden)
2009: 2nd (Stoner)
2008: 6th (Stoner)
2007: 3rd (Stoner)
2006: 12th (Capirossi)
2005: 5th (Checa)
2004: 7th (Capirossi)
2003: 3rd (Capirossi)

 

DUCATI TEAM – RIDER INFO

 

VALENTINO ROSSI

Bike: Ducati Team Desmosedici GP12
Race Number: 46
Age: 33 (born in Pesaro, Italy, 16 February 1979)
Residence: Tavullia (Pesaro, Italy)
Number of GPs: 260 (200 x MotoGP/500cc, 30 x 250cc, 30 x 125cc)
First GP: 1996 Malaysian GP (125cc)
Number of Wins: 105 (79 x MotoGP, 14 x 250cc, 12 x 125cc)
First GP Win: 1996 Czech Republic GP (125cc)
Poles: 59 (49 x MotoGP, 5 x 250cc, 5 x 125cc)
First Pole: 1996 Czech Republic GP (125cc)
World Championships: 9 (6 x MotoGP, 1 x 500cc, 1 x 250cc, 1 x 125cc)

 

Rossi’s MotoGP Results at Estoril
2011: Qualifying, 9th; Race, 5th
2010: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 2nd
2009: Qualifying, 2nd; Race, 4th
2008: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 3rd
2007: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 1st
2006: Qualifying, 1st; Race, 2nd
2005: Qualifying, 4th; Race, 2nd
2004: Qualifying, 2nd; Race, 1st
2003: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 1st
2002: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 1st
2001: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, 1st
2000: Qualifying, 12th; Race, 3rd

 

NICKY HAYDEN
Bike: Ducati Team Desmosedici GP12
Race Number: 69
Age: 30 (born in Owensboro, Kentucky, USA, 30 July 1981)
Residence: Owensboro (Kentucky, USA)
Number of GPs: 153 (153 x MotoGP)
First GP: 2003 Japanese GP (MotoGP)
Number of Wins: 3 (3 x MotoGP)
First GP Win: 2005 USA GP (MotoGP)
Poles: 5 (5 x MotoGP)
First Pole: 2005 USA GP (MotoGP)
World Championships: 1 (6 x MotoGP, 2006)

 

Hayden’s MotoGP Results at Estoril
2011: Qualifying, 13th; Race, 9th
2010: Qualifying, 2nd; Race, 5th
2009: Qualifying, 9th; Race, 8th
2008: Qualifying, 4th; Race, DNF
2007: Qualifying, 1st; Race, 4th
2006: Qualifying, 3rd; Race, DNF
2005: Qualifying, 9th; Race, 7th
2004: Qualifying, -; Race, DNS
2003: Qualifying, 15th; Race, 9th

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Guareschi reviews Estoril GP

The Estoril circuit was the setting for the third round of the 2011 MotoGP season over the weekend, and the Ducati Team came away with more Championship points and plenty to go on following the Portuguese Grand Prix. Read the full story

Posted in Articoli, Interviste, News ed eventi, Service Comments Closed

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