2012 Indianapolis MotoGP Press Release Previews

Press release previews from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone ahead of this weekend's Red Bull Indianapolis GP:


Yesterday, three weeks after having his left leg operated on to rebuild both the fibula and the tibia, Héctor Barberà was back at the Instituto Universitario USP Dexeus, in Barcelona.

This time, fortunately, it was only to submit Héctor to a medical examination made by Doctor Xavier Mir, the specialist who carried out the operation on Hector’s leg, to evaluate the progress of the patient.

In the last weeks Hèctor worked on passive therapy only, two times for each day. The Spaniard made an intensive work to complete this first rehabilitation phase and after Doctor Mir’s consulting, he can begin also with the active physical therapy.

The Pramac Racing Team in agreement with the Spaniard confirmed that Hèctor will ride on the occasion of the Grand Prix Ceské Republiky, which will take in Brno in two weeks time.

With the approval of Doctor Mir, Barberà is now able to start active physical therapy, working both in the swimming pool and in the gym.

Héctor will be replace by Tony Elias, who already rode for the Pramac Racing Team in the last 2012 round that took place in Laguna Seca, two week ago. Tony has another opportunity to show his potential at the mythical Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Héctor Barberà – Pramac Racing Team Rider –

“Firstly, I want to thank everybody for all their messages of support since the day of my surgery. The support and love has been overwhelming and it has been a great comfort to me at this difficult time.

I'm undergoing rehab on my leg; the situation is improving. It's been three weeks since the operation, and yesterday, Doctor Mir evaluates my physical progress. Now I’m able to give the leg an active workout, in the pool and in the gym, to get ready for the 12th round of this season in Brno.

I will have to work as fast as I can, but I hope to be in good shape for the Grand Prix Ceské Republiky.”


The MotoGP World Championship moves 2,300 miles east this week, making the journey from the Laguna Seca circuit in California to the world famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the eleventh round of the 2012 season. After skipping the first American appointment the Moto3 and Moto2 World Championships resume at the world's best known racing oval, where Team San Carlo Honda Gresini aim to return to the battle at the front of the pack. Alvaro Bautista continues his quest for the front-end feel and confidence that he had with the Honda RC213V before the Assen round, since when he has struggled to match his early season pace. For Michele Pirro the target is to end a run of misfortune that has seen the Italian rookie forced to retire from each of the last three races. Team San Carlo Honda Gresini's CRT project remains a work in progress and Michele is hopeful he can reap the fruit of the team's recent efforts this weekend.

Alvaro Bautista “Laguna Seca did not produce the result we were hoping for because I struggled for confidence with the soft front tyre there. On the Saturday we found a decent rhythm on that tyre but on Sunday the track conditions were slightly different and it upset the front end so much that I couldn't brake as hard as I wanted into the corners. We didn't have the confidence to run at a competitive pace and even though I managed to finish the race with some decent points it was not a true reflection of our potential. After that disappointment I took a few days to relax by the seaside but I have kept up to my training programme and I am ready to race again in America. I have also had a good opportunity to catch up with family and friends so now I am ready to get back to work and get competitive again like we were before Mugello. I have always had good results at Indianapolis and the track should suit the characteristics of our bike. We will try and test the tyres properly during practice to make sure that we don't have a repeat of the last race. I am feeling confident and highly motivated. Indianapolis is a unique circuit because it is anti-clockwise and completely flat, with some slow sections and a very long straight where you need good top speed. Last year I remember having some problems with the front tyre because of the recent resurfacing but hopefully that's not an issue this time. ”

Michele Pirro “Laguna Seca was our third non-finish in a row, this time because of a collision with another rider in the first corner. It's a shame because I really liked the circuit and was enjoying riding there. July wasn't a lucky month for me but together with the team I want to stay positive and focus on overcoming our problems in the best possible way. We have been getting more competitive and our pace is getting closer to the top CRTs so we want to continue that for the remainder of the season. Over the break I have had a bit of a holiday on the beach but I've been training hard too. I have tried to get the right balance of hard work and rest ahead of our next trip to America. I raced at Indianapolis last year and our objective there is to get back to the level we showed at Assen. I am confident we can achieve it.”

Fausto Gresini “The trip to Laguna Seca certainly wasn't anything to celebrate for Alvaro and it was even worse for Michele. We needed to work with Alvaro to rebuild his confidence and in practice we managed to do that. It was important for him to finish the race there but now we need to build on that and get him back to the level he showed at Silverstone. Indianapolis should definitely suit our bike so we will be working hard to get it back to the fight at the front of the pack. For Michele and the CRT project it will be important to think positive and put the recent disappointments behind us. We are sure we can do it and I am sure Michele and the guys will be doing their very best to get back amongst the battle to be the top CRT. ”

Yamaha Returns to the USA for the Indianapolis Grand Prix

After a well-earned two-week break the MotoGP paddock heads back across the Atlantic this week for the second of the two US rounds, The Indianapolis Grand Prix on Sunday 19th August. The Legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway has traditionally been good to current Championship leader Jorge Lorenzo, his fourth place finish in 2011 being the only year he has not finished on the podium in the premier class. 2009 saw a brilliant race win which few fans will forget due to the special ‘Captain America’ helmet he wore for the race.

Team-mate Ben Spies has always performed strongly in front of his home crowd, taking pole position in 2010 and converting it into his first ever MotoGP podium with a second place finish. 2011 saw another stunning ride; Spies overtaking team mate Lorenzo to secure third on the podium.

With 257,000 permanent seats the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the largest spectator sporting facility in the world and fills to capacity for its flagship events, The Indy 500 and Allstate 400 car races. Originally constructed in 1909 with a 2.5-mile oval, an exciting 16-turn motorcycle road circuit, which includes part of the historic oval, was purpose built for MotoGP. The circuit was resurfaced last year, improving grip levels considerably for the riders.

Jorge Lorenzo

“I really enjoy riding the Indy track, and have good memories here from my podiums in 2008 and 2010 and my great win in 2009. Last year I really struggled with grip in the race so I hope we can improve that this year. I’ve had a nice break but also been training to make sure I’m fit for this weekend!”

Ben Spies

“It’s going to be great to get out in front of all the US fans again, I love racing in America, the reception is always awesome. Indy is a track we go well at, and is pretty special to me for my first GP podium. I’m hoping we can make it three years in a row on the podium here!”

Wilco Zeelenberg

“We had some problems with grip in the race last year but we’ve moved forward since then so I’m hoping this won’t be an issue this year. It’s again the first time we’ve been here with the 1000 so it’s pretty exciting. Jorge likes the track and goes well here so let’s see if we can increase our lead in the Championship again!”

Massimo Meregalli

“It’s the second home race for Ben so expectations are quite high as he’s always performed well here. He was riding a very strong race in Laguna until the technical issue cased his crash so we are expecting that speed and form to continue here. We are confident he can fight to be on the podium for the third year running.”

Bridgestone MotoGP™ Race Preview - Round 11: Indianapolis, USA

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium, Extra-hard. Rear: Medium, Hard

Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Hard (Main), Soft (Alternative)

The second of two races taking place on American soil this season will be held this Sunday at one of the most revered motorsport venues in the world, the legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway, whose distinctive layout places significant demands on Bridgestone MotoGP™ tyres.

The Indianapolis circuit comprises three distinct parts; the renowned oval which forms the main straight, the opening complex and turns seven and eight built specifically for MotoGP™, and the rest of the infield which was constructed for when the circuit held Formula One races. Large sections of the circuit were resurfaced last year, resulting in more consistent grip levels, while some undulations on the tarmac that caused the bikes to behave erratically in corners were also removed.

After revising its tyre severity ratings for each circuit, Bridgestone will now supply special construction asymmetric rear slick tyres in the medium and hard compounds at Indianapolis to manage the very high tyre temperatures the 1000cc MotoGP™ machines are expected to generate around this circuit. The circuit’s abrasive tarmac and counter-clockwise layout with its fast and frequent left handers makes it one of the hardest events of the season for the left shoulder of the rear tyres; hence asymmetric rear tyres with considerably harder rubber on the left shoulders are supplied. The abrasive Indy track also means the extra-hard compound front slick is included in the tyre allocation alongside the soft and medium compounds.

Hiroshi Yamada - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department

“It is always a pleasure to visit Indianapolis as the motorsport culture here is very strong and the whole city gets behind the Grand Prix with many events taking place over the weekend. The venue itself is quite unique with elements of three different eras incorporated into the circuit and it is a challenge for both riders and tyres. Perhaps due to its particular layout, Indy is a race where the result is always hard to predict with four different winners and seven different riders making the podium since the race was included on the calendar four years ago.

“Apart from the regular MotoGP roster there will be two extra riders in action at Indy. Steve Rapp will once again be riding the Attack Performance-Kawasaki CRT entry, while Aaron Yates will debut the GPTech-Suzuki CRT machine so I expect even greater interest in this race from the American fans this weekend. To give these wildcard riders the best possible preparation for the coming weekend, our race engineers were on hand to assist both teams in a test at the Indianapolis circuit that took place on Saturday.”

Shinji Aoki - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department

“Indianapolis is split into three sections; the sectors from turns one to four and turns seven and eight were designed for MotoGP, the rest of the infield is part of the old F1 circuit, while the main straight is part of the world-famous oval course. This causes the character of the circuit to vary in each section, though a resurfacing last year has made the grip levels more consistent across the whole course. The circuit’s layout causes very high tyre temperatures through the high-speed left-hand corners, so asymmetric rear slicks with much harder rubber on the left shoulder are required here to provide the necessary durability and grip for the race distance, while ensuring good warm-up and grip characteristics on the lesser used right shoulder of the rear tyre.

“This year we have revised our rear tyre compounds for Indy and have gone one step softer with both options, with the medium and hard asymmetric rear slicks being supplied. Additionally, the rear slicks for this circuit now feature the same special heat-resistant construction as those provided at Mugello, Sachsenring and Phillip Island. Our compound selection for the front slick tyres also changes this year, with the soft, medium and extra-hard options now being made available to provide riders with a front tyre option for every kind of track condition.”

Repsol Honda Team return to Indianapolis after Summer break

Fresh and fully recharged after a well-deserved two week summer break, the Repsol Honda Team will be back in action this weekend for the second visit of the season to the United States. The legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway hosts the MotoGP family for the fifth consecutive year, and marks the eleventh round of the 2012 World Championship.

The venue, in its short history in MotoGP, has been good to the Repsol Honda Team. Dani Pedrosa (one pole position, one victory and one second place) and Casey Stoner (one pole and one victory) have been the last two winners of the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix. Dani won in 2010 with a clear margin of 3.5 seconds ahead of local hero Ben Spies, and Casey crossed the finish line in first place last year in front of Dani.

This year the engine power of the RC213V 1000cc machines will make a difference on the long straight of 0,872 kms. The changes in the asphalt, a very fast first turn and continuous changes in direction are in the DNA of this tight and technical track, world-renowned for the famous oval and the Brickyard.

The Repsol Honda Team celebrated their 300th podium at Laguna Seca and will aim to return after the holidays to increase this number with both riders fighting for the Championship, where Dani Pedrosa is currently second in the standings, 23 points from the lead, and Casey Stoner, third, 9 points behind his team mate.

DANI PEDROSA World Championship Position: 2nd with 182 points

"I had a very good summer break; in these two weeks I was able to relax a little, enjoy time with friends and get back into my training. At this time of year, Indianapolis is normally very hot so fitness is always key. I enjoy riding at this track and I've had good results in the past. I am really looking forward to this race and will fight to win and maintain the consistency we have showed in the first part of the Championship".

CASEY STONER World Championship Position: 3rd with 173 points

"After the great win in Laguna, we've had a nice break in the U.S, it's always good to take some time off here and spend some time with some friends. I'm not the biggest fan of Indy, mainly because we don't go on the historical track but the infield and in the wrong direction! The track is very flat and plain, also very tight. There are a couple of corners that can be fun but the majority are difficult, tight and there isn't any natural flow to the track. It's nice to visit a track with such great history but it's a shame we don't really experience any of that. We've had some good results there and won last year, but we'll have to wait until we get there to see how the RC213V will work around there this year".


Randy De Puniet and Aleix Espargaró arrive at Indianapolis tied on points as the best CRT riders in the championship

After a short summer break of just two weekends since the last race at Laguna Seca it is time for the MotoGP riders to plan their return to action this week as the series resumes on the other side of the United States at Indianapolis. The legendary 'Brickyard', home to the Indy 500, plays host to the eleventh round of the championship, to be followed immediately by round twelve in the Czech Republic next week. Indy's MotoGP circuit, laid largely around the infield of the world famous oval, is completely flat and measures 4.216km. Casey Stoner's victory at Laguna kept alive his hopes of fighting for the title with Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa as the season enters a crucial stage.

Randy De Puniet and Aleix Espargaró lie twelfth and thirteenth in the overall championship standings, tied on 33 points as the top CRT riders in the series by some margin. The first half of the season has been a resounding success for the POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar Team riders, who between them have taken eight CRT victories from ten races. The holiday period may have been short but it was long enough for both riders to recharge their batteries and prepare in earnest for a tough run-in to the season.

Randy De Puniet: "After Laguna Seca I spent a few days at Colin Edwards' house and had a lot of fun. We rode some dirt bikes and motocross bikes and then after that I went to stay with some friends in the Bahamas. It has been a nice holiday with plenty of opportunity to relax but I have also been doing sport every day. Now it is time to turn our minds back to racing. It is two weeks since the USGP so I am looking forward to getting back on the bike. We'll continue with the same approach that we have had up to now and hope for a little more luck than the last race, when I was punted off track in the first corner. Indianapolis is not one of my favourite circuits, it is very tricky because of the track surface, but our objective is the same as always, which is to finish as the top CRT."

Aleix Espargaró: "The break came at a good time for me. I needed to switch off and the time has flown by but I was able to spend it at home with family and friends and relax on the beach. I have also kept up to my daily training plan to make sure that I am fit and full of motivation for Indianapolis. The championship is long and tough. Luckily for us things have gone well in the first half of the season but we need to keep working hard to keep it going. My team-mate is a very strong rival and we are currently tied on points so we can't afford to lose concentration for one moment because every race promises to be a constant battle. I quite like Indianapolis. I struggled with the Moto2 bike last year because it was sliding around a lot but it is a different kind of track and I love the straight because you get to ride part of the famous oval."


Héctor Barberà is ready to get on his Ducati this weekend for the Indianapolis Grand Prix in the USA.

The Pramac Racing Team is happy to have its GP rider back and to continue the experience of this 2012 with him.

Héctor made huge progress in the last days working on active physical therapy and, from the first free practice session on friday morning, he will try to ride at the mythical Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Four weeks after having his leg operated to rebuild both the fibula and tibia, Barberà will evaluate his physical condition getting back to the track aboard on his Ducati machine.

Toni Elias, will be present in Indy to replace Héctor in case of need.

Ducati Team focuses on Indianapolis GP

After a brief, two-week summer break, the Ducati Team is on its way back to the United States for the second of two American MotoGP rounds. The team’s goal is to continue working on the bike in order to enable a positive final part of the season for Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden.

The American is particularly fond of the Indianapolis circuit, not only because it’s close to his home state of Kentucky, but also because it was the site of his first podium with Ducati, in 2009. Valentino Rossi has also been on the podium at this historic track, taking the victory when it first hosted the championship, in 2008.

As is always the case at the American events, Ducati Island will serve as the meeting point for the fans that come to support the Ducati Team, and to share the race weekend and enjoy the many exciting activities organized by the Italian manufacturer’s American subsidiary.


“This break served as an opportunity to make important decisions for the future, but now I want to return to thinking about the races because we want to improve and during the weekend it’s important to focus completely on what we have to do on the track. Indianapolis isn’t one of my favourite circuits, although I do have a win there. It’s a particular track because it’s one of those that goes in the opposite direction, so the lines are a bit strange in many of the corners. It’s a tricky track, but we’ll try to do our best and have fun.”


“Laguna was fun, but Indy is really my home GP, just across the state line from Kentucky. Hopefully we can do a good result. We struggled more at Laguna than I expected, but Indy is much faster, with more opportunities to open the throttle. It should be nice to ride that track on the 1000s, and it will be fun for the American fans to really get to see them in action. Last season, tyre wear was critical there, but hopefully the pavement will come in a bit better this year. I hope to be competitive starting on Friday, and I’ll definitely be disappointed if we don’t get the best result of the season so far.”


“The past month has been very intense for everyone, but now things are clearer. We can therefore concentrate on our work on the track as we continue to improve our bike so that Vale and Nicky can finish the season on an upward trend. Indianapolis is a challenging track laid out inside the famous oval for the 500, and it therefore features different types of asphalt, making for conditions that stress the tyres. It will be important to find a setup that makes it possible to take advantage of the hard tyres.”

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