2011 MotoGP motorcycle teams met on 1, 2 and 3 February at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia for a test session before the championship is scheduled to resume in Losail (Qatar) on 20 March forthcoming.
Among the teams present, Yamaha Tech 3, which Motul is faithfully supporting for the 22nd consecutive year, seized the opportunity to test the changes made to the YZR-M1. Despite a fall at high speed on the second day, these three days also allowed new rider Cal Crutchlow (he rode last year for Yamaha in World Superbike) to familiarise himself with his new machinery and with the highly specific 5.548 km Sepang track.
As for Suzuki Rizla, with which Motul has started a 23rd year of technical cooperation, Alvaro Bautista, the team's only rider for the 2011 season, also took advantage of these three days to evaluate the new and updated parts on his 2011 version of the Suzuki GSV-R. Unfortunately, he suffered stomach cramps, could not resume riding on the last day, and had to be replaced by Nobuatsu Aoki, the team's test rider.
Following these tests, Colin Edwards (Yamaha Tech 3) and Alvaro Bautista (Suzuki Rizla) finished respectively 9th and 10th on the time-sheets whereas Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha Tech 3) finished 17th.
Photos : © Stan Perec