Jorge Lorenzo says he’s unworried after finishing 17th on the opening day of MotoGP’s first pre-season test in Sepang, as he discovered that the learning curve he’s going through to adapt his riding style form nine years at Yamaha is steeper than he anticipated.
Finishing over a second and a half off teammate Andrea Dovizioso and Ducati test rider Casey Stoner, who topped the test, the five-time world champion admitted that he was surprised that it was harder than the end–of-season Valencia test had prepared for – but that it was far from a crisis.
“At this circuit I noticed a bigger difference between my Ducati and the bike that I have ridden for the last nine years. Now we have to do two things to be quicker: the first is to gradually adapt the bike to the way I like it, and the second and more important, is to know how to do that and understand how to be quicker.
“I still need some more time for that, more than I hoped for, but in any case it’s still too early to come to conclusions. It’s only a question of time and laps on the track, so we will work in this direction. The important thing is that the other Ducati bikes were very quick, and this means that the bike has a lot of potential.”
However, while Lorenzo remained upbeat, teammate Dovizioso was ecstatic at the end of the day, keen to take the positives from his second outing on the GP17 machine.
“The first day of testing in 2017 went pretty well and I am pleased because we showed good pace right from the start, using the same bike as Valencia and without needing to make any particular changes.
“Without the wings we had to adapt to the bike, and we still have a lot of fine-tuning work to do, both with the electronics and on the set-up, because the bike behaves differently, but in any case we are maintaining a good competitive level and it’s always important to start off with this sort of confirmation.
“Starting off on the right foot helps us continue with the development, and if you add to this the fact that I set my quickest time on a medium tyre, then we have to be satisfied.”
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