Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo got their first chance to test a 2015-spec factory Yamaha engine during today’s post race test session at the Catalunya track near Barcelona.
Next year’s motor was one of a range of test items that the pair evaluated today, including a new Akrapovic exhaust which they could both race at the next race in Assen later this month.
With in-season engine development now banned in MotoGP, Yamaha wanted initial feedback on an early prototype version of the 2015 M1 motor ahead of the next test session immediately after the Brno race in mid-August.
Comments from Italian Rossi and Lorenzo were the same after they rode the new engine in predominantly hot and sunny weather in Barcelona.
Both said the engine felt more powerful but that it made the YZR-M1 nervous and more difficult to control.
Rossi, who finished second behind Marc Marquez in yesterday’s epic 25-lap race, was 10th quickest today with a best time of 1.42.174.
The Italian only completed 39-laps, while Lorenzo was third fastest with a best lap of 1.41.515 in the 67-lap stint he managed.
Rossi said: “We started to work for next year with a different engine that has more power but the bike is more difficult to control. I want more power but with the bike easier to ride. It has more power at the top and when you go full throttle the bike moves more, so is more difficult to control. So we have a small advantage but you have to fight more with the bike. We need to keep the advantage but have the engine smoother. This is the target but it is for next year."
Spaniard Lorenzo, who missed the podium for the fifth time in seven races in a classic Catalunya tussle yesterday, said: “We tried an engine that is for 2015 that for the moment is not better. It is a little bit more nervous.”
Rossi said the new Akrapovic exhaust was a small step in bottom engine throttle response and he expects to race it during the legendary Dutch TT later this month.
The 35-year-old added: "It means better control with the throttle from the bottom which is very important. I like it because the connection is very good and it easier to control the bike.”
Rossi won last year's Assen race and a repeat will end the domination of Repsol Honda rival Marquez, who has won all seven races so far in 2014.