First day of MotoGP Phillip Island test 'wasted', say riders

MotoGP riders have lamented a 'wasted' and 'unfortunate' first day of Phillip Island's second pre-season test

First day of MotoGP Phillip Island test 'wasted', say riders

With so much off-season change, teams and riders were hoping for three clean days of running at the home of the Australian Grand Prix, but were greeted by changeable conditions.

Pramac Ducati rider Danilo Petrucci led the way on a day punctuated by rain showers.

Petrucci's team-mate Scott Redding completed the most laps, 33, while factory Ducati Andrea Dovizioso did not log a time at all.

"Honestly speaking for me today was a wasted day," Dovizioso said.

"This morning maybe we could have gone out on track when it was raining heavily, to do a few laps in wet weather set-up, but we preferred to wait a bit.

Key themes to watch in MotoGP testing

"However the situation didn't improve and the track always remained damp.

"In the afternoon I did a couple of out-in exits with my Desmosedici GP, to allow the engineers to check a few things, but now I'm really hoping the weather is good tomorrow and Friday to give me the chance to put in some track time with the new bike."

Official weather forecasts currently indicate a 40 per cent chance of rain on Thursday, and 70 per cent for Friday's final day.

Riders did get a brief window of dry running in the final hour on Wednesday, which left several high-profile riders down the order.

Having dominated the Sepang test a fortnight ago, world champion Jorge Lorenzo finished the day in 16th, his best lap set in wet conditions.

"It was a very unfortunate day," Lorenzo said.

"Mixed conditions; not really wet and not really good conditions for riding and there were not many minutes to try in these conditions.

"I did only two laps on the slicks and had very strange feelings."

NEW INTERMEDIATE RARELY USED

Michelin's MotoGP return includes a new intermediate tyre, but teams elected not to risk the unproven rubber at Phillip Island, despite the mixed conditions.

During what he dubbed a "quite frustrating" day, Valentino Rossi was one of the few riders to sample it.

"It's always difficult to find the right window to use the intermediate tyre, but it can help," the Yamaha rider said.

"In the past, with the slick, it was quite dangerous to go out in half and half conditions.

"This year we can use the time more effectively, but here in Phillip Island the feeling with the bike and the tyres changed a lot compared to last year, so we need to work; every track can be different."

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Petrucci fastest as rain mars start of Phillip Island MotoGP test
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