ROUND 2 Preview - Spain 27-29 April 2012
Circuit Length:4.423 Km
Moto3 - 23 laps
Moto2 - 26 laps
MotoGP - 27 laps
125cc - Julian Simon, Aprilia (2009) 1:47.057 = 148.731km/h
Moto2 - Toni Elias, Moriwaki (2010) 1:44.710 = 152.065km/h
MotoGP - Dani Pedrosa, Honda (2010) 1:39.731 = 159.657km/h
2011 - Nicolas TEROL, Aprilia
2010 - Pol ESPARGARO, Derbi
2009 - Bradley SMITH, Aprilia
2008 - Simone CORSI, Aprilia
2007 - Gabor TALMACSI, Aprilia
2011 - Andrea IANNONE, Suter
2010 - Toni Elias, Moriwaki
2009 - Hiroshi AOYAMA, Honda
2008 - Mika KALLIO, KTM
2007 - Jorge LORENZO, Aprilia
2011 - Jorge LORENZO, Yamaha
2010 - Jorge LORENZO, Yamaha
2009 - Valentino ROSSI, Yamaha
2008 - Dani PEDROSA, Honda
2007 - Valentino ROSSI, Yamaha
MotoGP: Jorge hoping for home hat-trick
Jerez has been on the World Championship calendar for 26 straight seasons and recently had its contract extended to 2013 – which means one of Aragon/Barcelona/Valencia has to drop out as the sport’s authorities have said there will be three Spanish rounds next year. Jerez runs to 4.423 kilometres, packing in 13 turns, eight to the right, five left, with a longest straight measuring just 607 metres.
In any sport the psychological edge is crucial – and it’s Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo who has it as the field heads for round two on his Spanish home soil. Lorenzo, winner in Qatar’s season-opener, has won the last two MotoGP races at Jerez, and has previous 250cc form as well, having taken the flag in the intermediate category in 2006 and 2007. Victory at Jerez would give Lorenzo 40 wins across all classes and bring him equal with Casey Stoner.
Stoner, surprisingly, has never won at Jerez in any class and goes into the race carrying concerns over the arm pump that slowed him in the closing stages at Qatar, where he finished third. The Australian is keen to avoid surgery on the arm, which affeceted him at Silverstone back in 2010. Another concern is chattering on corner entry and exit. His Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa – about to start his 100th senior GP – has never finished off the Jerez podium in the top flight.
Notice the missing brand? Yes, it’s Ducati, whose woes continued when a Mugello test planned to help Nicky Hayden get mileage on the GP12 (he missed valuable bike time through pre-season injury) ended up as a virtual wash-out. Hayden was the best Duke rider in Qatar, while teammate Valentino Rossi has been complaining bitterly about persistent understeer as one of the main reasons for his failure to deliver on a machine that Stoner handled with such success. Jerez will be The Doctor’s 200th senior-class GP start but he’s unlikely to add to his record of eight Grand Prix wins here, six of them in the premier class.
Watch for another eye-catching performance from Cal Crutchlow. The Tech 3 Yamaha rider qualified on the front row in Qatar and finished fourth. Remember what we said about the psychological edge? Cal agrees, saying it’s all down to confidence: “not confidence in a cocky or arrogant way, just confidence as in knowing that I can do it, and I feel I’ve got that back again now.”
Bridgestone have announced the supply of another front tyre spec which, they say, will enhance rider feel and warm-up performance, so the allocation is now 11 front tyres per rider.
Moto2: Making another Marc?
If you can imagine an armada on wheels, then do so: names like Marquez, Rabat, Espargaro and others will enjoy fanatical local support. But it should be another classic shoot-out between Team Catalunya Suter star Marc Marquez and Speed Master’s Andrea Iannone on a Speed Up. Marquez’s Qatar win gave him eight in the class, more than any other rider to date, but ‘Crazy Joe’ won here last year.
And don’t discount Tom Luthi: he wasn’t best pleased with the rough stuff, as he saw it, towards the end of the Qatar encounter, dropping back to fifth when a podium looked certain and a victory highly possible. So the Interwetten Suter rider will be out to mark his 150th Grand Prix start with another outstanding performance.
Moto3: Maverick riding for record
Speaking of the Spaniards, keep an eye on Maverick Viñales: if the Spaniard wins in Jerez on the FTR Honda he will be the youngest rider ever to take four successive Grand Prix victories. It’s the first Moto3 race here, of course, so previous form at Jerez counts for nothing.
Mind you, it didn’t in Qatar either when Team Italia’s Romano Fenati, also on an FTR Honda, stunned everyone by becoming the first rookie to stand on the podium in his maiden race since 1998. But Aussie viewers will want to track the progress of Adelaide teen Arthur Sissis on the Red Bull KTM Ajo, who took it to the big names in Qatar and finished a creditable seventh ahead of teammate Danny Kent.