Three-Day Test At Jerez Starts: Moto2, CRT Bikes, BMW WSBK And Ducati Test Team On Track

The sun is shining and the bikes are out on track at Jerez for three days of testing. The test will see a wide variety of bikes take to the Andalucian asphalt, including the BQR MotoGP team with their FTR-built, Kawasaki-powered CRT bike, Colin Edwards getting his first outing on the BMW Suter CRT bike, a bevy of Moto2 teams including Marc VDS Racing testing the Kalex further, Tech 3 riders Xavier Simeon and Bradley Smith, the Pons and Aspar teams, Maverick Viñales testing the FTR Moto3 bike for the first time, the factory BMW World Superbike squad of Marco Melandri and Leon Haslam, and the Ducati MotoGP test team, with test rider Franco Battaini and the specially drafted in Carlos Checa to help test the Ducati Desmosedici.

For the Moto2 riders, this is mainly a welcome continuation of the test at Valencia. The teams lost two days of testing to the weather at Valencia, leaving them with a lot still to do. Scott Redding was an early crasher on Wednesday morning, taking a tumble at Turn 7, from which he walked away unscathed. The crash was caught on video by the onboard camera installed by the Marc VDS Racing team on Redding's Kalex.

For the Ducati test team, this is another chance to get feedback from 2011 World Superbike champion Carlos Checa. Checa has been handed the bike Ducati is calling "GP Zero", the 2012 Desmosedici with the aluminium chassis which Ducati debuted at the Valencia MotoGP test, and which is being used as a baseline for the development of a radically new chassis to be tested in Sepang in February. There was some speculation that Valentino Rossi could be drafted in to ride the GP12, but as Ducati does not have sufficient new parts for Rossi to test, and Rossi is due to take part in the Monza Rally Show - a special edition this year, dedicated to the memory of Marco Simoncelli, killed in a crash at Sepang - the Italian will not be present, despite being allowed to after the testing rules were relaxed by the Grand Prix Commission when it met at Valencia.

BMW's World Superbike squad is also present, with a lot of work to do ahead of a second test scheduled for next week at Portimao. BMW have finally abandoned their home-made electronic package, and have adopted the Magneti Marelli electronics used by almost every other team on the grid. Along with Marco Melandri, BMW have hired most of the members of the now-defunct Yamaha WSBK squad, including crew chief Silvano Galbusera and former team manager Andrea Dosoli.

The test is a private one, and as a result, times are unlikely to be published. This is a shame, as the comparison of the Moto2 machines, CRT machines - especially with a rider of the class of Colin Edwards aboard - and the BMW Superbike would make fascinating reading. We shall publish whatever we learn of the times, but as they say, don't hold your breath.

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I thought the 2011 Testing restrictions clearly stated that teams may test for a total of eight days with their contracted riders. The relaxation of the rules starts effectively Jan 1st 2012, where the Grand Prix Commission had “agreed that with effect from 2012 private testing of MotoGP class machines may be carried out by any rider, subject to a limit on the total number of tyres being supplied by the official MotoGP tyre supplier”.

The 2011 rules means that Rossi nor Hayden cannot particape in any testing as those 8 days have been used up in full.

The new testing rules are effective immediately and up to the end of November, from the end of November until the official tests begin the ban is back in force, but from there on it's down to limited tyres only.
Meaning any of the factory riders can test up until the end of this month.

That makes Rossi's absence even more baffling. This will be his last chance to test the GP12.46.Zero bike for several months. I have to agree with the other posters and say that VR is not giving Ducati their $15,000,000 worth of determination and dedication. Perhaps Philippo should demand a refund?

How is Marquez' eye/eyes doing? Is he back to 100% or have there been some lingering effects from his crash?

Marc is still having double vision so he's not taking part in the test... Doctors said he has shown improvement, but improvement has been slow.

Oh man, would love to be able to compare Suter's BMW and the factory's WSB BMW.
Oh well, not holding my breath.

...the times posted by the CRT bikes thus far have been very encouraging. These bikes are barely off the frame jig and are posting some pretty reasonable times. Get a mob with experience like Aspar doing the setup, a few iterations of frame and engine development, and Robert's your Mothers Brother. I'm looking forward to it, entirely positive. My only concern is the talk of the lease-situation remaining. If they want this formula to flourish they need domestic championships, and that requires that every bike on the grid is not crushed at years end.

The winter test ban starts Dec 1st. Since the testing rules were 'relaxed' there is now unlimited testing. The previous rules were for the 2011 season which is now over. The only limitation now is the number of tires B-stone will supply.

I think it prudent to have BMW there. Even if they have nothing to do with Forward Racing other than sharing an engine. At the least, Colin could concievably get back to back seat time to compare the two. Might be good for both teams. If his feedback confirms the feedback of the BMW riders and results in a positive change for the WSBK team. Also, that situation just may give the Forward team a new direction to make changes.

Problem is, Colin isn't at 100%. I'm sure he'll be able to get a feel for the bike (or bikes) but whether he'll be able to push at 90-95% to find any problems is another matter all together. Hope he can, and does. Still really curious to see what a rider of his caliber can do on a CRT.

the Ultimate never-happen would be to have Jorge/Dani/Casey on a CRT bike, but then again I always wanted to see one of those guys on the GSV-R to see what the bike could really do (more so back before Bautista's hard work finally translated into some decent times this season)

I'd love to see the times the aliens would put in on the GSV-R. Stoner especially, with his ability to get up to speed on a new bike so quickly, would give us all some seriously interesting numbers to look at.

Wonder if Suzuki could be convinced, now that they're out anyway? Could give them some useful information for when they return. The riders' current contracts would probably not prevent it either, now that Suzuki has pulled out - they wouldn't be riding a competitor's bike.

Rossi's total lack of commitment is demonstrated by the fact that he can't be bothered to turn up at a very important test for Ducati after bleating on about lack of testing opportunities, citing a car rally weekend as an excuse. Time to hang-up your leathers Vale.

It is interesting for sure. A lack of new parts doesn't mean much when you're at least 1.5secs off the pace, there's a whole lot more to test than 'just new parts' (just look at 2011 for example!).

So these test riders will be eating into their B-stone allocation already, and Rossi didn't have the respect to show up? Unacceptable imho, I was really hoping his commitment would be 110% towards Ducati getting out of the hole they are in with him in the seat.

Before questioning his work ethic you might want to try and determine why he would be at the Monza rally over the Ducati test. The Monza rally has always been something that Rossi is involved in, also Simoncelli, which from what I've read they are doing a tribute to Super Sic. With unlimited testing basically, they can test when they want, at the tracks they want and when they have adequate parts to test. Also Hayden is out b/c of his recent surgery. If you knew anything you'd know that Ducati, Rossi and Burgess have the goal of competing for the 2012 championship. If Rossi were going to throw in the towel it would have been opportune to do it after Sepang.

"Also taking part in the rally show will be Andrea Dovizioso, Moto2 riders Andrea Iannone and Claudio Corti."

The unlimited testing still has to adhere to the winter testing ban from Dec 1st to Jan 31st. Rossi and Burgess were in a total flap at Valencia two weeks ago trying to get everything done before the end of the 2nd day of tests. There are many radically changed brand new parts that Checa has been testing today on the all black Ducati, clearly visible. And yet where is Valentino after whinging all season about lack of testing opportunities?... Back home in Italy playing with a rally car. Time to hang his leathers up for good.