Dani Pedrosa eager to kick off 2012 pre-season

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Dani Pedrosa says he’s eager to kick off pre-season preparations for the 2012 MotoGP campaign in Malaysia tomorrow and find out if winter developments have improved the new Honda RC213V machine.

The Spaniard will test a new chassis when testing commences at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia tomorrow (Tuesday).

The new frame is based on his feedback from the pre-Christmas Valencia test in Spain where he was one of several riders to encounter a chatter issue with the new softer construction Bridgestone tyres.

When asked by MCN what he was hoping HRC staff had improved in the off-season, he said “Some chattering needs to be fixed and better entry to the corner and braking we still need to improve a little more. This is a tough track here and the tyres are important.

"It is the first time we will run in very high temperatures with these new tyres, so maybe the behaviour is so different that we have more or less chatter. At the moment it is all to know and I’m ready for it.”

Pedrosa said he will also continue the process of making small changes to his riding style to suit the new generation 1000cc machines that are more powerful and have more torque compared to the old 800s.

He added: “With these bikes you have to brake a little bit earlier because the top speed is higher and maybe the corner speed is a bit down so the acceleration is stronger. So sure the way you spin and the way you go into the corner and the line you choose will change.

"You have to adapt but it is still a bike with two wheels.”

For the second time in his Repsol Honda career, Pedrosa starts with his team-mate carrying the number one plate.

He was Nicky Hayden’s team-mate when the American captured the last 990cc crown in 2006 and partnered a dominant Casey Stoner in 2011.

Stoner’s success has inevitably increased the pressure on Pedrosa to deliver a serious title challenge having failed to lift the MotoGP crown in his previous six attempts with HRC.

He said: “It is nothing new to me but it always good to have quality riders next to you because it makes you better and it makes you perform better.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt