Repsol Hondas Close Jerez Test 1-2... with a Catch! - 600RR.net
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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Repsol Hondas Close Jerez Test 1-2... with a Catch!

Since the 2007 MotoGP season has come to an official close with the winter test ban going into effect December 1 and ending in mid-January at PI, I thought a good discussion might be opinions, predictions and comments on 2008 riders and machines.

The Repsol Hondas closed out the season on top with the only two riders dropping below the 1'39 mark, smashing even the early season pole position time set at the track. However, there's a couple of catches: 1. It was done on Qualifier tires and 2. The top time was set on the 2007 machine.

Sure, Nicky was off Dani's pace by less than 0.3 secs on the 08 machine, but what does that mean? For one, Nicky is already faster than Dani on the 08 machine, but the 08 machine is still slower than the 07.

The only other rider in the vicinity of the two riders was Jorge Lorenzo, off the pace by over half a second! Rossi says that his pace was good (notably eventhough he's still suffering from an injured hand), but what's more remarkable, says he, is that the tires were consistently good over the test.

Going back to Lorenzo, one of his rivals Dovizioso is about as fast, lap times-wise, with less than half the seat time! Toseland has already lapped faster than Randy dePuniet and RdP is riding on the same bike Dani set the final times on versus JTs historically slow M1.

You know Stella? No? Well, not her, but Nakano's got his groove back as well, lapping consistently fast on his Honda, now shod with Bridgestone tires (a tire he's familiar with from his Team Green days).

Looks to be an exciting 2008, so discuss:

1. Who do you think will be rookie of the year?
2. Who do you think is the sleeper of the year?
3. Who do you think will emerge out of the Yamaha garage?
4. Who do you think will be more flamboyant: Rossi, Lorenzo or...?
5. Who do you think will emerge out of the Honda garage (not just Repsol)?
6. What do you think when Spies gets a wildcard ride in this 2008 group? Does he lose all his stock if the field is super strong?
7. How will the 08 212V do against the satellite evo212Vs? Is Honda worried?
8. Rossi on Bridgestones: Did he just screw himself?
9. Casey with the bum shoulder, how long will he be out and will this affect his off-season training like it did Hayden?
10. Where the freak is Melandri?! Did he just pull a Capirex?

Dang, I can't wait for the 08 season!

Bernard
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- Nicky Hayden #69

Next Track Days (NESBA): September 10 - Summit (Main)
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 06:01 PM
 
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Rookie, well u can't call him a rookie, but the new guy in moto gp 'James Toseland' will be a shock I think, whenever a rider makes a transition from WSB, AMA whatever....it always seems to be that fitness is the biggest factor in the change over.

I don't see this as a problem for Toseland, the guy is super fit, never out of shape and if he gets a good early start, it will be much easier for him to keep up in the top 7 or 8's i reckon. He is a 2 x world champion, he isn't there to fuk around!

Bring on 2008!!!! Cannot wait!!!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 06:03 PM
 
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Infact scrap the 7 - 8's im puttin a bet on at my local bookies (betting shop) that he will get a 4th position finish opening race....not much £5 ($10) lol!
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 07:26 PM
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man i'm gonna get slammed for this.

My prediction for 2008...Stoner repeats. Just not by a huge margin like this year.

Rossi and Dani are injured badly, and Hayden ends up a strong 3rd overall. My surprise second place finisher......Jorge Lorenzo, showing up his teammate and ultimate cry-baby, Valentino Rossi.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 08:42 PM
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Looks to be an exciting 2008, so discuss:

1. Who do you think will be rookie of the year?
As much as I like Lorenzo, Andrea Dovizioso will take Rookie of the Year. This guy has so much talent it's not even funny (INSANE LATE BRAKING). In the 250s that are predominately ruled by the Aprilias with their insane power advantage over the Hondas, every race was a fight to the podium for the Italian riding his Honda250. However, he managed to lock in his 2nd place finish in the championship. That's quite an achievement. Dani Pedrosa, on the other hand won the championship twice against the Aprilias - unbelievable achievement. In addition, if there's one thing he wants so bad to achieve...well, it's to win Rookie of the Year over Lorenzo.

2. Who do you think is the sleeper of the year?
I believe Alex de Angelis is definitely underestimated. He placed 3rd in the 250s and he's out to show the world MotoGP is where he belongs.

3. Who do you think will emerge out of the Yamaha garage?
Emerge on top? Well, that would have to be Rossi.

4. Who do you think will be more flamboyant: Rossi, Lorenzo or...?
Both are gay in their own little way but definitely Rossi because he'll get the most victories over Lorenzo.

5. Who do you think will emerge out of the Honda garage (not just Repsol)?
Andrea Dovizioso, Alex de Angelis, and Randy de Puniet. PERIOD. Shinya always does well during test but falls short during the race.

6. When do you think Spies will get the wildcard ride in this 2008 group (Edited your question)?
After the 8th or 9th race, whenever Miller or Laguna starts - whichever comes first.

Does he lose all his stock if the field is super strong?
Not sure what you mean - N/A

7. How will the 08 212V do against the satellite evo212Vs? Is Honda worried?
The satellite Evos will be just as competitive especially if it comes down to another tire war.

8. Rossi on Bridgestones: Did he just screw himself?
I'm all for getting the best equipment one can but if the tires don't work for him he better not complain.

9. Casey with the bum shoulder, how long will he be out and will this affect his off-season training like it did Hayden?
Off-season like Hayden? Plz...wateva.
Stoner will have no problems whatsoever. Once the light goes off, he'll put out a good show for us.

10. Where the freak is Melandri?! Did he just pull a Capirex?
Melandri is a smooth rider, and like to ride (haha...) bikes that are smooth (ie. Hondas). The Ducatis are a beast and I don't know if he can ride the piss out of it like Stoner and Cap did. We'll find out.
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 08:54 AM Thread Starter
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Looks to be an exciting 2008, so discuss:

1. Who do you think will be rookie of the year?

I also think Dovizioso will be ROY. The kids plain fast and logistically speaking, while he doesn't have factory support, the 2007 evo212V is really fast... I mean, pass the Ducati on the straight fast. And it can turn, is silky smooth. The bike was made for 250 riders. But aside from that, the kid's got mad skills. I wouldn't be surprised if he puts one over on the other rooks.

2. Who do you think is the sleeper of the year?

Hmm, the sleeper of the year... I'd probably say Nicky Hayden. Why would I call him a sleeper? Because no one gives him a chance. You got people saying that Stoner is going to come back strong, maybe win it although without the huge margin; you have people saying Rossi will be strong; of course, you've got the paper King, Dani Pedrosa. Shoot, some people are already thinking Lorenzo is going to make a big splash and take some. So, quietly in the back drop, Honda stops thinking about Dani's suggestions for development and listens to Hayden. Hayden pops up and comes up big.

3. Who do you think will emerge out of the Yamaha garage?

Honestly, I think JT will emerge out of the Yamaha garage. He has a good support system and you can't knock a garage that's working together. With Edwards in there sharing information and helping the development, that can only be good. Whereas Lorenzo is an island in the FIAT garage. And who knows how well he can develop a bike?

4. Who do you think will be more flamboyant: Rossi, Lorenzo or...?

I agree, both are a little ghey. But Rossi is going to end up whining a lot more than winning. Lorenzo will get maybe 1-2 wins in the season and that'll be enough to see him jump on the box and do his schtick. That'll piss off Rossi and oh well...

5. Who do you think will emerge out of the Honda garage (not just Repsol)?

Dovizioso will emerge out of the Honda garage. He's Italian on a Honda. In the recent past, that was never a bad thing.

6. What do you think when Spies gets a wildcard ride in this 2008 group?
Does he lose all his stock if the field is super strong?

I think he does get a wildcard ride in 2008 with Zuk since Capirex is on a one year contract. That being said, I think this field is so strong Spies looks WORSE than if he had run a wild-card among the 07 field. By that, I mean his stock will drop a little because I don't think he'll be as competitive in a field this stacked. Have you ever seen a field this stacked?! Really...

7. How will the 08 212V do against the satellite evo212Vs? Is Honda worried?

I don't know about Honda, but I'm worried. I take a little bit of comfort knowing that Hayden set the second fastest time on the 08-212, only .3 seconds slower than the evo212. But throughout the tests, the 2008 has struggled to top the sheets, sort of like last year, and you know how that ended up. Meanwhile, rookies are tearing it up on the evo212. Shoot, even Randy deWreckingBall is going fast on the evo. I'd be worried and I think the 08-212 will come on after the fourth race or so, mark my words!

8. Rossi on Bridgestones: Did he just screw himself?

In a word, yes. Ducati/Kawasaki/Suzuki have been working with Bridgestone for years. There's an important principle of designing a bike around its tires. This can't bode well for the first year on the M1. I think Bridgestone works super hard to bring Rossi what he needs, but I don't see it helping Rossi regain the WC.

9. Casey with the bum shoulder, how long will he be out and will this affect his off-season training like it did Hayden?

I hope so. I don't like Stoner. Maybe it's because of that Aussie directness and a little bit of cockiness and smugness. I don't like riders who call out other riders (another reason I don't like Dani). That being said, I know he'll be fine in about 6 weeks or so. Torn ligaments in the shoulder heal quicker than broken bones, so to speak. But it's interesting to note that he tossed his bike twice in two days. That's a first. Maybe he's going back to his old self.

10. Where the freak is Melandri?! Did he just pull a Capirex?

I agree with you. Honda = smooth power; Ducati = violent power. Melandri has been said to be working with the electronics to help that. But I don't think he'll have the same problems as Capirossi. Capirossi likes the power even MORE violent than it was in 07. He likes the on-off nature of the bike. Ducati found some sort of middle ground that didn't suit Capirex, but suited Stoner just fine. But it doesn't bode well for him being so low in the time sheets.

Bernard
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CBR600RR5 (track)



"Itīs not easier to ride, but I donīt need something easier, I need something faster."
- Nicky Hayden #69

Next Track Days (NESBA): September 10 - Summit (Main)
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 12:54 PM
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1) Lorenzo, he's 250 champ.
2) Lorenzo, "". Hayden is PO'd former champ, he won't be sleepin at all...
3) Rossi, he's a 7x World Champ
4) Whoever has more neon colors, but who cares?
5) Hayden, has most heart of HRC riders.
6) Laguna, where he will be lapped.
7) 08 212 will be faster, Honda will be worried about Rossi/Bridgestone.
8) Did not, he took a bigger gamble on unproven machinery + he's a 7x World Champ
9) Casey will be out until Jan 22nd, when the test ban ends. He will be fine, his old self is 2007 champion.
10) Melandri is in mid-pack, He has stated his issues, I didn't know power delivery was one of them.

There isn't much you can say about testing. Thats what it is, testing a million parts and tires for data. Qualifiers also hide the faults of bike setup.
I could probably give a better prediction of 2008 if I were over there analyzing data for all the teams, if only I were that lucky.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 03:40 PM
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One thing testing times don't reflect is how the bikes perform against each other on the track. Dunno how close the times were from last years tests but it sure didn't show the Ducati smoking everyone at the first GP. It's like when you had the 500 V-twins against the V4's - they could put in good times with a clear track but couldn't transform that into race pace dicing with the V4's.

I'm glad to see Toseland making steady progress, from reports on Crash.net he has been doing all his runs on race tyres and full fuel loads.
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