Date : 05/04/2012
Weather : Dry
Temperature : Air: 27 degrees, Ground: 26 degrees
Humidity : 40%
The 2012 MotoGP World Championship began tonight under the footlights of the spectacular Grand Prix of Qatar.
The Repsol Honda riders took to the Losail circuit for the first time this season in a short free practice of 45 minutes, and started to work on the set up of their RC213V for the opening race of the Championship.
Casey Stoner set the fastest time with 1'56.474 and his team mate Dani Pedrosa finished fifth with 1'57.130.
The action continues tomorrow with two more practice sessions to prepare for qualifying on Saturday.
CASEY STONER – 1st - 1'56.474
"The track tonight wasn't so bad, I expected the conditions to be much worse but in general it was ok. We started this evening with huge chatter issues and I was a little afraid we couldn't fix this but after a few more exits we managed to reduce it to a more comfortable level. This is a positive point for the weekend but with such a short session and then nothing until tomorrow it's slightly strange. It was an ok start tonight, we finished quickest which is good but we'll have to wait until tomorrow for some real track time and with the conditions a little better and see where we are".
DANI PEDROSA – 5th - 1'57.130
"There are some corners where we are struggling a lot with the chattering, especially in the area where you slide more, but it's like this and we will need to adapt the best we can. On my first exit I had an issue with the tyres and I had to stop in the garage; I felt a vibration in the wheels, so we decided to change both tyres. I lost some time there and at the end of the practice I went wide twice. Anyway, it's been good to go out there and get the feeling back at this track after a long time without riding here. Tomorrow, with two practices sessions, we will start working more with the chassis and electronics to improve and prepare for the race".