Jerez a ‘Special’ Track for Lorenzo

jorge_lorenzo_jerezJorge Lorenzo is ready to race again at Jerez, a track that he says is one of his favorites. Not only is Jerez Lorenzo’s home circuit, but it was also the site of his first win in the 2010 MotoGP season. Lorenzo says that Jerez is a special circuit for him because it is where he first raced in front of an enormous crowd.

“I am ready to come back to Jerez,” Lorenzo said. “This is a great moment to ride for my people and my Fan Club here in Spain. Last year the situation was very similar, and perhaps I got the best victory of my career, closing a big gap in the last few laps.

“We can’t make predictions for Sunday, but my crew and I will work as hard as possible to be in the front. Jerez is a special place for me, maybe the best track in the world. When I was only 15, the day right after my birthday, I raced for the first time in front of 100,000 people here.”

The Jerez track is also special for Ben Spies, but for different reasons entirely. Spies will be looking to score his first MotoGP points at the Spanish track, as he crashed out of contention during last year’s race at Jerez.

“I have unfinished business here at Jerez,” Spies said. “I really enjoyed riding here last year but was disappointed not to be able to take some points. Now, I’m back with a full factory machine. I believe the outcome should be a little different. We have track knowledge from last year so we can focus straight away on getting the 2011 M1 set up and we’ll see what we can do. It’s my team-mate’s home race so I’m expecting a great atmosphere.”

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Valentino Rossi: Jerez Not Favorable for Ducati

valentino_Rossi_Ducati_SetupFor Valentino Rossi, there is good news and bad news about this weekend’s MotoGP race in Jerez. The good news is that Rossi is the most successful rider at the Jerez track. The bad news is that in Rossi’s opinion, the Jerez track is not favorable for the Ducati machine.

Rossi has scored six premier class wins at Jerez, the most for any MotoGP rider. But Rossi still may not be ready for the podium. Only two weeks have passed since the Qatar race, where Rossi continued to struggle with shoulder problems. This could continue to be a problem at Jerez, but Rossi is more concerned about the Ducati machine.

“From a technical point of view, Jerez doesn’t seem to have been the most favorable track for Ducati, but I’ve always liked it a lot,” Rossi said. “We’ll definitely have to try and do better than we have until now.

“For the moment, we’ll continue working on the set-up, using everything we learned in Qatar, where we found some good solutions for the race.”

Nicky Hayden is also hoping to improve upon his Qatar results. Hayden finished fourth at the Spanish GP last year, and says that Jerez is one of his favorite circuits.

“Jerez is a really unique race with a great track. It’s one of the highlights of the whole season, and because it’s the first European race, in some ways it almost feels like it’s the first race of the year all over again,” Hayden said. “It’s a track I’ve enjoyed in the past, and I definitely enjoy racing there.

“Round 1 in Qatar obviously didn’t go how we’d hoped, pretty much from the start of the weekend, so we need to just try and learn from that and go into Jerez and hopefully come out a lot stronger on Friday. Hopefully we can get up closer to the sharp end and have a bit of fun. Jerez can be a really fun weekend if you’re in the mix. We don’t really have any miracle game plan or anything crazy. We’ll just go in there and try and get a good result.”

Rossi and Hayden earned 7th and 9th place results respectively in Qatar, and haven’t been able to find the speed to keep up with the pace of the Honda machines. But team manager Vito Guareschi is eager to get back to the track and prove what the GP11 can do.

“I can’t wait to get back to the track for the next race, and to continue working on the GP11 in order to give Vale and Nicky a bike that’s as competitive as possible,” Guareschi said. “For a variety of reasons, we haven’t been able to take full advantage of the winter tests, but the Qatar race weekend allowed us to collect important data and information, and I think that the team did some great work on the setup. It’s true that at least with the 800s, Jerez hasn’t been particularly good to us, but both Valentino and Nicky like it a lot and we’ll go there ready to give our best.”

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Red Bull Rookies Set for Opening Race in Jerez [Video]

red_bull_rookies_cupThis weekend, the MotoGP riders will enter the second round of the 2011 season at the Jerez circuit. Fans attending this weekends event will also witness the opening race of the 2011 Red Bull Rookies Cup.

The Red Bull Rookies Cup will feature 25 of the best young racers from around the world, as the fight for race wins, fame, and the chance to ride in the GP.

There will be 14 races this year at 8 GPs. The Red Bull Rookies will travel along with their GP idols to Jerez, Estoril, Silverstone, Assen, Mugello, Sachsenring, Brno and Misano.

14 countries are represented this year in the Red Bull Rookies Cup, including one from the United States. Each rookie will be riding a KTM Grand Prix 125 throughout the 2011 season.

Here’s a video preview of the 2011 Red Bull Rookies Cup.

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Maxime Berger Loses Rear Wheel at Donington Park [Video]

maxime_berger_loses_a_wheelWell this is something you don’t see every day. While racing around the Donington Park track, Maxime Berger’s rear wheel breaks off and flies down the track ahead of him.

Berger, who rides a Ducati 1098R for the Supersonic Racing team, suffered “unexpected rim failure” at Donington Park.

Berger was unharmed in the crash.

Here’s the video of Maxime Berger losing his wheel at Donington Park.

“I’m disappointed and incredulous,” said Berger. “I’ve never had to stop twice for two such strange reasons. The rim broke. I was lucky because it broke in a slow corner. I went to the ground without knowing what happened. Practice had gone well. I had a good feeling with the Ducati and was at a pace that would allow me to win my first points in the championship. Anyway, the team did a great job here at Donington and with their help I am sure the results will come in the coming races.”

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Fail: Bubba Stewart Impersonates Police, Gets Arrested

Officer Bubba StewartJames “Bubba” Stewart was arrested last night for impersonating a police officer. The 25- year- old motocross phenom was taken to a jail in Orlando, FL after he attempted to pull over a vehicle with his own version of flashing lights. Sure, scaring the shit out of people with a fake police light is all in good fun, but it just so happened that the vehicle he pulled was occupied by two off-duty police officers.

He’s fast in the dirt, so he decided to make another brilliant move and flee when the two men identified themselves as officers. Unfortunately, there were no table-tops or whoops to slow down the officers from calling ahead to the Orange County Sherriff, and Officer Bubba was taken into custody at the Orlando International Airport, along with his passenger, 44-year- old Thames Quinault, who tried to conceal the lights from the police in his bag.

Really? Millions of dollars, fame, and fans won’t stop some people from being infinitely stupid. Great job James, have a Red Bull.

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