QUALIFYING 1 REPORT
The Yamaha World Superbike Team ended the first day of on good form with both riders taking top five positions in the first of the Valencia qualifying sessions. As relative newcomers to the circuit having never raced here it was an impressive start for both Spies and Sykes who were quicker than a number of World Superbike regulars in the Spanish sunshine.
Spies finished the session in 2nd position 0.13 seconds behind fastest rider Max Biaggi (Aprilia) whilst team-mate Sykes wrapped up the session in fifth place a mere 0.5 seconds off the leader. Sykes took a small spill at the end of the session whilst experimenting with different corner gears but was unhurt.
Ben Spies, Yamaha World Superbike Team (2nd, 1’34.907)
"It was a good day for us, in the first session we ran into some problems and we were unable to finish the session but in the second session we were really good. I think we’ve found our race set-up and race tyres already so we’re now just going to continue to make the bike better. I think it’s going to be a really good track for the bike, everybody’s definitely a little bit closer here, our goal for sure is just to stay with all the other bikes and see how we get on. The Ducati’s have always statistically been the better bikes round here, so our goal is to stay with them and look for our opportunity, if we can be strong at this track we can be strong anywhere. Right now our bike is working really well, but we can still make improvements and make it better for the race."
Tom Sykes, Yamaha World Superbike Team (5th 1’35.270)
"Over all for me it was a good day. We started off a little bit slower in the first session but again thanks to the team we’ve come back this afternoon and tried a couple of things with the suspension and straight away I felt a lot more at home, especially with the heavy braking areas . At the end of the session we tried some new tyres and straight away I was doing low 35’s, and I feel confident we could have got into the 34’s. I had a small crash at the end, totally my mistake. I was going into turn two and I tried using a different gear. On the exit it was working really well but unfortunately I had less engine braking on the way in so I just overloaded the front a little and at this pace that little bit is enough go down. On a positive note it was something that we can identify, it was my fault and not the bike, we’ve got a really good base setting and can go into tomorrow looking to make even more improvements."
Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha World Superbike Team Manager
"we are very satisfied, considering it’s the first proper day in Valencia for our bikes and for our riders we’ve performed pretty well. We are already looking to tomorrow to make some small adjustments to the set-up which we will do and that’s it. We may work a little bit more on the tyre endurance to try to find the best one to use for the race but overall we have a good set-up and looking forward to racing on Sunday."
Circuit Length: 4005
Yamaha World Supersport Team riders Cal Crutchlow and Fabien Foret got straight down to business in Valencia today. Under the revised 2009 schedule there was no qualifying session and only one free practice session to work out the set-up today. Despite this both riders got onto the pace quickly and echoed their Superbike counterparts, ending their session in the top five.
Crutchlow ran the entire session without changing tyres, ending just 0.75 of a second behind leader Lascorz (Kawasaki) who had changed to fresh tyres for the final laps. Crutchlow’s team-mate Foret was happy with a good session, working on his set-up and finishing in 5th position 0.3 seconds behind 4th placed Sofuoglu (Honda).
Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha World Supersport Team (2nd, 1’37.343)
"It was good enough today. I think consistently over the whole session we were fast enough. Our pace is good, even after a lot of laps on the same tyres and we’re confident with our Yamaha. Lascorz had a big advantage as he went out with a new tyre at the end which we could have done but we chose not to. I was happy enough with the pace and the bike is working really well for me. I’m disappointed with the schedule as it is, I think not having two practice sessions on a Friday has hindered us quite a bit. On the positive side Yamaha are doing a great job and my team’s really good, we’re still searching for a little bit but nothing we can’t find!"
Fabien Foret, Yamaha World Supersport Team (5th, 1’37.864)
"Well I’m very happy with the work we did today. I’ve changed my approach following the first two rounds of the championship, I’m being a bit more relaxed and finding it easier to focus on the bike and improving the set-up. I think we found some good stuff today and can go forward to tomorrow happy and maybe looking for a couple more improvements. I’m not focusing on points, I’m just concentrating on setting up my bike and racing as best I can, If I have a chance to try and win then that’s great."
Wilco Zeelenberg, Yamaha World Supersport Team manager
"I’m happy, it’s the first free practice and both my riders are up there and have the speed and there’s still space to improve tomorrow. There were a couple of small tyre issues today and a little bit of chatter but these are small things. The bike is 90% ready and the sun is shining!"
Circuit Length: 4005