Brno MotoGP: Valentino Rossi happy with new engine

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Valentino Rossi reckons a revised factory Yamaha engine has helped him with throttle opening after he ended the opening day of the Czech Republic GP with the second fastest time.

A best lap of 1.57.410 was only 0.179s slower than Casey Stoner as the leading duo dominated the first day of free practice.

Rossi got his first chance to assess Yamaha’s latest generation in-line four-cylinder motor and he told MCN: “We haven’t improved the top speed a lot but I have better and smoother power delivery from the bottom.

"So the new parts in the engine help me to open the throttle a little bit better and I am quite happy. In the test (Monday/Tuesday) we try to improve and make another small step for the last part of the season.”

Rossi also said he was happy with the new Brno track surface, despite pre-race fears that front tyre wear might cause major problems in the 22-lap clash.

Rossi added: “My personal feeling is very positive because it is normal that a new surface has a bit less grip at the beginning. But the Safety Commission and all the riders wanted the new surface because last year the bumps were very, very big like at the first corner and at the last part.

"Now the bumps have 80 per cent disappeared so I think they did a great job wth the new surface. It looks like it has quite good grip in the wet too because the 250s were quite fast when it rained so I think it is a positive work.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt