Gerno di Lesmo (Italy), 30th April 2014
Fresh from an action packed weekend in Argentina, the MotoGP paddock has now completed an exhausting journey back to Europe. This week sees Movistar Yamaha MotoGP set up camp in Spain for the first back-to-back race weekend of the year, the Gran Premio de España at the Jerez circuit in the South of the country.
Valentino Rossi arrives back in Europe excited to return to a circuit that has recorded him a considerable number of victories. The nine-time World Champion has an impressive record on the Andalucian circuit with a staggering six premier class wins and two additional victories in the 125cc and 250cc classes. Last year’s visit saw him finish just off the podium with fourth place.
Jorge Lorenzo is excited to return to his home country to race on familiar territory, the two-time premier class world champion has an impressive record at Jerez, with two 250cc wins in 2006 and 2007 and a further two premier class victories in 2010 and 2011. 2012 saw him take second on the podium, just 0.9 seconds from a third potential premier class win and last year saw him continue his premier class podium run with third.
The Jerez circuit was built in 1986 with the first Grand Prix taking place one year later. The 4.423km Jerez circuit sits within a natural amphitheater usually full to capacity with a dedicated MotoGP crowd and is characterized by numerous quick direction changes and few hard braking points.
“Jerez is one of the most special and important Grand Prix weekends of the season, the track is fantastic and there will be a lot of fans so the target is to improve and make the podium. We have to work a lot, the bike is good but we have some weak points which we have to improve to go faster so we can fight with the Hondas.”
“We come back to Europe and I’m so excited to race at home, in Jerez, in front of the Spanish crowd, especially after I’ve got my first podium of 2014 now. The taste of that podium was really great and sweet after two difficult races. The track is always amazing not only because of the layout but also the atmosphere; that is so magical. Obviously this race is going to be tough because both Honda riders are in a very good shape as we saw from Qatar, although Jerez is normally good for Yamaha it is also a special place for Honda. I think I have to improve my physical condition a little and also we need to improve as best as possible our bike and be patient and wait for our moment that for sure will come. Anyway, the latest results feed me to be stronger and gave me much more confidence. In Jerez I will push at the maximum to get another great result!”
“We are all very happy to return to Europe after our adventures in South America. It is with mixed emotions that we come back to Europe, following Jorge’s first podium in 2014 after two very difficult races and Valentino’s fourth place that confirms his third position in the overall standing. We know our competitors are at their best but we are confident we will also be so from the start on Friday. It’s been a long and exhausting journey from Argentina to here but it is a testament to the professionalism of the team and riders that we will be giving 100% from the start. Both Vale and Jorge are very familiar faces on the Jerez podium, we aim to continue that tradition this year.”