Yamaha prepares for battle in Barcelona
Yamaha Factory Racing heads to Spain this week for the second home race of the year for reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo, the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya at the Circuit de Catalunya, Montmeló on Sunday 16th June.
The circuit promises to deliver an exciting weekend of racing as the scene of one of the greatest battles between Lorenzo and his teammate Valentino Rossi in 2009 when the Yamaha riders took it to the wire over the last laps in a fight for glory, won at the last corner by Rossi.
Fresh from his superb victory in Mugello, Lorenzo will be eager to repeat the performance in front of his home crowd and continue his unbroken four-year podium run at Montmeló. The Mallorcan was second in 2009 and 2011 and claims two premier class victories there, 2010 and 2012. Lorenzo also has one 250cc win at the track in 2007.
After a disastrous home race in Mugello that saw him crash out on the first lap after a collision with Alvaro Bautista, Rossi will be determined to come back fighting this weekend in Spain. The nine-time World Champion can claim more victories at Montmeló than any other GP rider with one 125cc win in 1997, 250cc wins in 1998 and 1999, one 500cc victory in 2001 and five premier class victories in 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2009.
Opened in 1991 and home to the Gran Premio de Catalunya since 1995, the circuit can boast one of the longest main straights in the world. Lorenzo and Rossi will need to find the optimum chassis balance and front-end feel for their YZR-M1s to deal with the long radius, medium and high speed sweeping corners, two tight left-hand corners and numerous camber changes.
”I’m quite satisfied after our great result at Mugello that completed an almost perfect weekend. Winning again was very positive for me and for the team and now we go to Montmeló, my home grand prix. Some parts of the track are quite suitable for us but the doubt is always if the track conditions and the temperature can benefit us. I am very optimistic for the race and we will keep on working on the bike in the same way that we did in Italy. Compared to Mugello, Montmeló is a little bit slower but at least there are no first gear corners and hopefully that will help us a lot. This is a good track for us and we have to profit from it and try to repeat the victory. It could be great for the Championship. As far as I’m concerned I will push 100% to achieve it.”
"For a few days after I had the crash at Mugello, I hurt everywhere! Fortunately I was able to start training immediately and I did not waste any time. The Barcelona race will be very important, especially after recent results. I want to get on the podium in Spain and I will do my best as usual. It will be important to start the weekend in the best way and make a good qualifying. It will be very important to start from the front.”