Friday, March 16, 2012

Lorenzo’s four wheeled GP2 experience in Valencia

Invited by the Barwa Addax Team, the Spaniard participated in a private test yesterday with a GP2 series race car at the Valencia circuit.

The 2010 MotoGP World Champion spent the day at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia on Wednesday testing the GP2 Series racer of the Barwa Addax Team. Team owner Alejandro Agag is an acquaintance of Lorenzo's manager, Mark Hirsch, and invited the rider to experience driving the Formula 1 precursor at the high speed circuit.

Although Lorenzo has engaged in various four wheeled competitions throughout his career, yesterday was the biggest challenge the rider has faced to date: A first generation GP2 car that was raced in the world championship series between 2005 - 2007 and later in the Asia series from 2008 to 2010. An authentic Miura -fighting bull- warned the members of the Spanish team, with a Dallara chassis, Renault V8 engine capable of 600hp at 10,000 rpm, perfectly comparable to Formula 1 cars of the time, but with the challenge of not one electronic driving aid.

The Mallorcan met the challenge brilliantly, meticulously absorbing the advice provided by experienced race car driver Javi Villa, to end the day running within a few seconds of the lap times set by Villa earlier in the day.

"It's a unique experience, very different to what I'm used to," said Lorenzo. "It was impressive and although with the bike I go 310 km/h at this circuit, in the car I went about 280 km/h. But to drive so close the ground, it seems like you go much faster so it was very impressive. The braking is amazing, you can brake very, very late- almost inside the corner."

"I'm happy with the result, although the last few seconds are the hardest to lower and because I'm already leaving, it’s going to stall further progress," added the Spaniard, although in later sessions after the lunch break and with a new set of tires, Lorenzo continued chipping away at his times and surprising the members of the Barwa Addax Team.

"For the first time out, I’m satisfied because I started to find the limits of the car. Although the racing for me is MotoGP for a lot longer, I hope." After speaking to about the day’s activities, Lorenzo also commented on the statements made yesterday by Lin Jarvis, Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Racing, arguing that to secure the title, any team would ideally want to have Jorge Lorenzo or Casey Stoner as their rider.

"At the moment, Casey and I are the favorites right now, but things can change overnight. But it’s true that we are the favorites: We’re still both very young, and are the two who finished first and second last year. It’s logical that the factories want to bet first on those who finished first and second," said Lorenzo, who ends his contract in 2012 as do the other factory riders.

"But Pedrosa is close and is very fast, and regarding Rossi, what can I say? He has nine titles, more than 100 victories...and then there’s Hayden, Dovizioso and Spies. There are quite a few who could win the Championship."

source: MotoGP Official

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