Early effort sees Silva quickest at wet Jerez
Avintia Blusens’ rider Iván Silva put in a hot lap on slick tyres during a damp first practice session at Jerez to finish Friday on top of the timesheets.
With conditions neither fully wet nor dry during the first practice session, only eight riders chose to go out in FP1 and those that braved the rain only turned out a few laps in the hope that conditions would improve towards the end of the session. However, sporadic rain continued falling throughout the morning session and continued right until the start of FP2.
The earlier downpour resulted in enough standing water on the circuit to necessitate wet tyres in FP2 and it was Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who was quickest in the afternoon session with a time of 1:50.870. Second quickest in FP2 and six-tenths of a second back was a resurgent Valentino Rossi on the Ducati GP12 while Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo continued his affinity with the Jerez circuit by posting the third fastest time of the session.
Wet conditions are predicted for Saturday and in accordance with the new wet tyre regulations, Bridgestone, following consultation with race direction after FP1 has made available an alternative wet tyre compound, which at Jerez is the soft compound, for the remainder of the race weekend. Riders can now select a maximum of two front and/or two rear tyres in the alternative wet compound as part of their total allocation of five sets of wet tyres. This change in regulation was proposed by Bridgestone and ratified at the last GP commission meeting at Qatar and ensures riders have greater flexibility in choosing a wet tyre that works best for them.
MotoGP action at Jerez will resume tomorrow from 1010 local time (GMT+2) for FP3, with qualifying scheduled to start at 1355 local time.
Hiroshi Yamada - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department
“Track conditions today were not the best due to the intermittent rain. Our decision to make the hard wet compound the main wet tyre at Jerez was vindicated during FP2 today, as the extra durability of this option meant riders could better manage tyre wear in what were not fully wet conditions. I am pleased with how the wet tyres performed today in the challenging conditions.
“As wet weather is also forecast for tomorrow, the change in wet tyre regulations which have come into effect this weekend will allow riders to choose a maximum of two sets of tyres in an alternative wet tyre compound, which at Jerez is the soft compound, for use over the rest of the race weekend. Bridgestone proposed this change to give riders greater choice when selecting a tyre for wet conditions and is another step in our efforts to constantly improve the safety of MotoGP riders.”