Good start for the Repsol Honda Team in Laguna Seca

The Repsol Honda Team enjoyed a strong start in the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix today in Monterey, California.

Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa, separated by just one tenth of a second, took the top two positions in the first free practice session at the Laguna Seca circuit, while Andrea Dovizioso was six-tenths off the Australian rider in fifth.

With colder temperatures on the ground compared to last year, the riders began working on the set up of the bikes with a softer tyre that Bridgestone brought to America. Casey's best lap time this morning (1'22.300) is still one second slower than his circuit record lap (1'21.376 in 2010), but with higher track temperatures this afternoon, the times will soon improve in the second free practice session starting at 14h10, local time.

CASEY STONER – 1st 1'22.300
"This morning went ok, at the beginning of the session the tyres were working well and the grip was pretty good. We tried a few different things and got the bike working better and then the tyres started to go off quite a lot, I'm not sure if this is due to the track being cold in the first part of the session, but for sure they weren't as good at the end of the session. It will be difficult to understand if we got any real decent data this morning and we'll have to wait until we get onto the harder compound tyres this afternoon to see if the current setting will work with those or not. We still have a few areas to improve for sure, it's hard after one session to really say anything certain but I suppose we're happy enough at the moment".

DANI PEDROSA – 2nd 1'22.402
"We had a pretty good start, we needed to make some small changes on the set up of the bike to better absorb the bumps in this circuit. Laguna is more bumpy than Sachsenring and there are many fast changes of direction, we have some wheelies and hard braking, so we have to adjust the set up according to this. Early in the session I went wide in Turn 2, I made a mistake with the gear and I couldn't stop the bike, so I just released it, nothing else. For the rest, everything was OK. Bridgestone tyres, with a softer compound, worked well in the morning, so it's positive. In terms of my physical condition, my back is sore and I guess I will have more pain during the weekend, but I will try to recover well during sessions and do my best".

ANDREA DOVIZIOSO – 5th 1'22.911
"Laguna Seca is a special track, very different from any other circuit and it takes a while to find the rhythm. This morning I didn't have too much feeling in the corner entry and I was a little slow in the middle of the corner. Considering that I was not 100% comfortable, the gap from the first riders is not too big and I'm confident that we will improve in the afternoon, when we will do a comparison between the two bikes equipped with two different set ups, a setting we thought about using in Sachsenring. This afternoon the temperatures will rise, the track will have more rubber and we will all push more. I really like to race in the U.S. because every event becomes a show. The atmosphere and the fans are incredible".

Practice Results
1 Casey Stoner 1'22.300 AUS HONDA Repsol Honda Team

2 Dani Pedrosa 1'22.402 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team

3 Jorge Lorenzo 1'22.420 SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing Team

4 Ben Spies 1'22.806 USA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing Team

5 Andrea Dovizioso 1'22.911 ITA HONDA Repsol Honda Team

6 Marco Simoncelli 1'23.210 ITA HONDA San Carlo Honda Gresini

7 Nicky Hayden 1'23.297 USA DUCATI Ducati Marlboro Team

8 Colin Edwards 1'23.459 USA YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3

9 Valentino Rossi 1'23.467 ITA DUCATI Ducati Marlboro Team

10 Alvaro Bautista 1'23.529 SPA SUZUKI Rizla Suzuki MotoGP

11 Hector Barbera 1'23.596 SPA DUCATI Paginas Amarillas Aspar

12 Randy De Puniet 1'23.807 FRA DUCATI Pramac Racing

13 Cal Crutchlow 1'24.018 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3

14 Toni Elias 1'24.324 SPA HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP

15 Loris Capirossi 1'24.566 ITA DUCATI Pramac Racing

16 Karel Abraham 1'24.682 CZE DUCATI Cardion AB Motoracing

17 Hiroshi Aoyama 1'25.325 JPN HONDA San Carlo Honda Gresini

18 Ben Bostrom 1'27.286 USA HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP

Circuit information
First race 1988 (Modified 1996)
GPs held 12
Laps 32
Race distance 115.520km / 71.776miles
Track length 3.610km / 2.243miles
Track width 15m
Longest straight 0.966km / 0.6miles
Corners 11 (4 right, 7 left)
Pole position Right

1021 Monterey Salinas Hwy
Monterey
CA 93940
United States T: +1 831-242-8201
Website: http://www.mazdaraceway.com

Circuit records
Pole position 1m20.700s (161.040Km/h) Casey Stoner (Ducati, 2008)
Race lap 1m21.376s (159.703Km/h) Casey Stoner (Ducati, 2010)
Race time 43m54.873s (157.833Km/h) Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha, 2010)
Premier Class Wins 3 (Wayne Rainey 1989, 1990-01)
2010 Winner Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha)