Jorge Lorenzo remains on top in Australia

By Matthew Birt -

MotoGP

 04 March 2014 09:06

Jorge Lorenzo remained in control of the Bridgestone tyre test in scorching hot conditions at the Phillip Island track in Australia today.

The Spaniard improved his pace to a 1.29.133 today to edge out compatriot and Repsol Honda rival Dani Pedrosa by 0.248s.

This week’s three-day tyre test has been arranged by Bridgestone to seek a solution to the major tyre wear issues that were experienced during last October’s Australian Grand Prix.

With a new surface causing excessive wear, Dorna had to take drastic action and enforce a historic shortened two-part race on safety grounds.

Six new tyres of varying compounds and constructions have been available this week, and today’s plan was to run longer distances to check endurance.

Dani Pedrosa completed the longest run of 20-laps on his factory Honda RC213V, while Cal Crutchlow and Lorenzo’s factory Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi both completed 20 laps on the same tyre but in split runs of six and then 14 laps.

Nobody reported the blistering and chunking issues that dominated the race five months during today's session.

With rain forecast for the final day tomorrow, Bridgestone had wanted the five-strong MotoGP line-up to complete a full 27-lap race simulation this afternoon to gain as much data as possible.

But temperatures soared to a punishing 34 degrees this afternoon and surface temperature nudged over 50 degrees.

That resulted in all full distance runs being aborted, as any information would not have relevant for October’s race, which will certainly be held in significantly cooler conditions.

If tomorrow’s rain doesn’t materialise then each rider will complete a full race simulation.