Rossi took the 10th-best time during Day 1 of testing at Valencia aboard his new Ducati Desmosedici.
Valentino Rossi made his much anticipated debut on board the Ducati Desmosedici on Tuesday. The Italian turned laps at the Valencia circuit as part of a two-day MotoGP test along with 16 other riders (view the results in our 2010 MotoGP Valencia Day 1 Test Results). The 31-year-old hopped aboard the Ducati wearing plain black leathers, contrasted strongly by his neon Number 46 written across his back.
Rossi’s first trip lasted just eight laps so he could get an initial feel for the bike. The team first utlilized the big bang engine for much of the first day, and worked on additional items such as geometry. Rossi then set out on the screamer version, making one final pass before calling it a day. Overall, the Italian set a best time of 1’35.134, and finished the first day of testing in 10th directly behind his Ducati teammate, Nicky Hayden. For Ducati the stated goal of this test is to determine whether to go with a screamer or big bang engine for the upcoming season.
Good luck finding out what Rossi had to say about his experience aboard the Ducati. As a condition of Rossi’s early release from Yamaha for the Valencia test, the Italian’s former employer issued a gag order which prevents him from discussing his GP11 debut. Fans will have to wait until the official team launch in January of 2011 to hear what Rossi thinks.
“It has been an exciting day for sure,” said Filippo Preziosi, General Director of Ducati Corse. “The main thing that hit me today was Vale’s positive feedback and his capacity for analysis. Today he tested the GP11 with the ‘big bang’ engine on a standard setting, which he modified step by step to adapt it to his riding style. His first comment when he lifted his visor up was a positive one about the power delivery and then he gave some impressive technical details. We certainly have a lot to do to adapt the bike to his riding style but it is really nice and very interesting to work in this way. We worked on the geometry and setting today to see how the bike responded and to get a bit of experience working with both Vale and Jeremy (Burgess). At the end of the session he went out on the screamer version but we will make more of an analysis between the two engines tomorrow because they deliver the power in very different ways – the big bang has a more regular power curve whereas the screamer is more aggressive but also more powerful. Nicky tried both versions today and this evening we will have a look at all the data.”