Dovizioso and Ducati top Qatar pre-season MotoGP test
Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso lifted the spirits of Ducati fans around the globe after posting the quickest time at the final MotoGP pre-season test of 2015 at Qatar’s Losail International Circuit.
Dovizioso posted a time of 1:54.907 on the second day of the test to finish 0.184 seconds clear of Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez on the timesheets, while his Ducati stablemate Andrea Iannone was third quickest overall, a further thirteen thousandths of a second behind. The pace amongst the MotoGP riders at Qatar was incredibly close, with the top fourteen riders on combined times split by less than a second.
Apart from the final day of the three-day test which was abandoned due to rain, conditions at Qatar were dry and fine with track temperatures ranging from 21-42°C. As is typical of the Qatari circuit, track conditions on the opening day were poor due to the presence of wind-blown sand on the tarmac which reduced grip levels while increasing tire wear, although the track did improve over each session.
All of the slick tires in the allocation for the Qatar test were used during the two days of dry track time, with the medium compound front tire being preferred by the majority of riders, although the greater braking stability of the hard compound front tire also made it an attractive option for many riders. For the rear tire, the asymmetric medium compound rear slick which was available to both the Factory and Open-class riders was the most popular option due to its combination of warm-up performance, cornering grip and durability.
With pre-season testing drawing to a close for 2015, Bridgestone will be back at the Losail International Circuit for the opening round of the upcoming MotoGP season from March 26.
Masao Azuma – Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorcycle tire Development Department
“Although rain on the last day of the Qatar test reduced the amount of track time available, overall this was a productive test for Bridgestone. This year we brought a new tire allocation to Qatar to give the riders better warm-up performance and feel, and judging from the feedback we achieved this goal, while also delivering strong and consistent performance. All the data we gathered from Qatar over the past few days will now undergo further analysis at our technical centre in Japan, and we now look forward to the opening round of the 2015 season at the same venue in two weeks’ time.”