In a previous item, I discussed the changes that have been made to the track at Assen, especially the changes to the North Loop. Thursday was the first day that the riders got to ride the track in anger, and to learn what the new Circuit Van Drenthe at Assen is really like. Here's a compilation of rider comments on the changed layout at Assen, taken from interviews from MotoGP.com:
- Shinya Nakano: "I like the new track. More technical, and I like it."
- The ever-discrete Casey Stoner: "Disgusting. This track was one of the greatest tracks in the world, but they've completely destroyed it over the last couple of years. I don't even think anyone enjoys racing here any more."
- The similarly discrete Colin Edwards: "It's crap. The track was the best '95, '96, when I first started coming here, and every year they keep screwing it up piece by piece. ... It's still gonna be some good racing, but the temple of the Dutch TT is a little bit diminished with what we have now."
- Valentino Rossi: "For sure, it's not the old Assen, but anyway, it's not so bad."
- Dani Pedrosa: "Assen is now like a go-kart track."