Jerez test: Valentino Rossi sets early Jerez pace

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Valentino Rossi needed just seven laps to move to the top of the timesheets on the opening day of MotoGP testing at a cold but sunny Jerez.

The reigning world champion has clocked a best time of 1.41.248, as he didn’t even take to the track until after 1pm, with track conditions too cool this morning for any meaningful testing.

The Fiat Yamaha rider, who won nine races in a dominant return to form in 2008, currently sits a massive 0.664s clear of Honda rival Dani Pedrosa.

Fiat Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo is fourth on only his second outing on Bridgestone rubber as the field continues to adapt to the new single tyre rule.

Tech 3 Yamaha rider Colin Edwards is fifth quickest with a best time of 1.42.798 having completed 17 laps on his Bridgestone debut. That is one placer ahead of factory Ducati rider Nicky Hayden in seventh.

British rider James Toseland is currently eighth quickest with a best time of 1.43.613 as he gets to work with new crew chief Gary Reynders, while also making his Bridgestone debut.

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt