Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo endured a tough opening day at Silverstone with both riders finishing outside the top 10 after combined practise sessions.
It will be equally frustrating for both riders after a brilliant showing last time out at Brno. Expect plenty of work to be carried this evening within the garage to ensure they close the gap on Honda tomorrow and Sunday.
Both riders reflected on a poor first day with Rossi stating “We expected to be faster and more competitive but we are struggling a lot. This morning in first practice was not fantastic but also not so bad, I was not so far from the other guys but I didn’t like the feeling in the bike on the front. For the afternoon we worked a lot on the setting on the weight distribution to help on the corners but it looks like we took the wrong direction. I didn’t have a good feeling with the bike, when we enter the corner I don’t have a feeling with the front and also I have a vibration and not enough grip. I lose a lot of corner speed on entry and I was quite slow. We will continue to modify the bike in another way and we will take some data for tomorrow to try something completely different to understand if we can go faster.” Lorenzo added “We only have one problem, it seems Bridgestone has brought the same tyres that we had in the first races so we have the same problems as then. We have no grip to stop the bike, no grip in the middle of the corner and no traction so we have a lot of spinning and the negative point is it creates problem on the front. No grip on the rear doesn’t give us the balance in the middle of the corner which means we have to lean less and have lower speed. All the Yamaha riders are the same, we have similar problems. It seems that with this tyre we have now it’s very difficult for us. Of course we are going to try everything to solve this problem, we have to try to manage the situation, the tyres will be the same all weekend so we have to adapt to it. It seems it’s going to be a hard weekend for the Yamaha riders.”
Team boss Massimo Meregalli was also a little subdued with today but insisted “Today wasn’t the start we expected to have. Both Jorge and Vale have similar issues with chattering and being able to hold the racing line so we have quite some work to do for tomorrow. We weren’t able to find solutions in time for the sessions but we will continue to work this evening. We will be ready to make a step forward in the next free practice and bring them closer to the front. We know we can perform well at this track so we’re confident we can improve. Let’s see what tomorrow brings.”