Aoyama Quickest On Second Day Of Sepang Rookie Test

The rain continues to dog the last of the rookie tests, another downpour at Sepang disrupting practice for Marco Simoncelli and Hiroshi Aoyama as they acclimatize to their Honda RC212Vs. Fortunately, the rain paid only a brief visit in the afternoon, allowing Simoncelli to rack up 44 laps and Aoyama to accumulate 43 laps of the Malaysian circuit.

Both men improved their times, but as yesterday, it was Hiroshi Aoyama who was the quickest of the pairing. Aoyama's 2'03.25 on the Interwetten Honda was nearly half a second better than Simoncelli's time of 2'03.70 aboard the factory-spec San Carlo Gresini Honda, but both men were still some way off both Casey Stoner's lap record of 2'02.108 and Valentino Rossi's pole record of 2'00.518.

Simoncelli continued to emphasize that times were not important. In the Gresini press release, he is quoted as saying "I must insist once again that this is not my objective at the moment. The most positive thing is that I have lapped at a consistently fast pace for all 56 laps and I started to enjoy it." His main focus was to adapt to the bike and continue to find the right set up.

The test concludes tomorrow, and will be the last time a MotoGP bike turns a wheel on a circuit until February 3rd, back at Sepang.

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The 2010 RC211V is even smaller than the 2009 model. And Simoncelli almost looks ridiculous riding it, even moreso than the Gilera 250. I think he will have a tough road to hoe.

The bike that Simoncelli is being pictured on (here, for example) is Toni Elias' bike from last year. So it's actually a 2009 factory-spec RC212V, not a 2010 one. They probably won't get that until the Sepang tests at the very earliest.

I'm sure that the people that make and set up motorcycles for racing for a living have a few subframe and rearset tricks of working around a few extra inches of height.

And Simoncelli is only 1 cm taller than Rossi.It's not like he's a freakishly large giant. It's just that hair.

It's not like he's a freakishly large giant. It's just that hair.
Funny because it's true. ;)

In general I'm not sure why his height should be of much concern anyway. Every rider has his package to carry and deals with it.
If life throws hair lemons at you...

Pedrosa is at a severe disadvantage in the sprung weight department! It's amazing he has any traction at all. But he does fit so nicely behind the wind shield it must make up for it.

I'm 6'2" and over 100 kilos and think my Vespa ET is just too big for me.

You're making my point exactly. Pedrosa can't even reach the ground when he sits on the bike and turning the thing is a monstrous task for him (not even talking about trying to pick it up after a crash), Canepa had the rear brake lever mounted on the handle bar because of his large feet, a bunch of riders have "weight issues" and possible disadvantages because of a couple kilos more than the others.
Every rider has his personal physical issues in that regard and it either equals itself out (like Pedrosa's size) or the rider and his team just have to make it work somehow. So I won't spend any extra pity on Simoncelli in comparison.

,,being the fastest on slow(er) machines. It would be a disgrace for Honda to not give him a top shelf machine next year. He bleeds Honda more than anyone on the grid, and always pushes.
,,dark horse consistent top 10 finisher next year., Step-up Honda, the ball is in your court.

seems to be going about things very logically with his engineers (starting with no traction control in valencia and gradually feeding it on for example)

being one of my favourite riders i'm pretty desperate for him to do well, especially since toseland is gone

i expect he'll end up on the same spec bike as de puniet, the higher spec satellite machine, rather than a full factory spec plus we know what good that did for elias early in 2009

i wonder, does anyone know how much support honda are actually giving to him? supposedly it was mostly all scots efforts last year, but he kind of deserves something from honda considering what he did for them

I might be wrong, but as far as I read in German-speaking media, Daniel Epp is only getting the regular satellite Honda package and therefore everything he wants extra, he has to pay for (much like Cecchinello does for De Puniet next season). Since Aoyama is (at least to my knowledge) signed by Epp for the Interwetten Team and not by Honda directly, there won't be any additional support by Honda, the support comes from the team and is depending on money, not on loyalty to the factory.

But, as I said, I might be wrong and someone else might have to correct me on this.