Ben Spies best in the dry, enjoys wet debut

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

With the pace-setting factory Hondas side-lined for engine checks, Ben Spies led a Yamaha dominated second day of MotoGP testing at Sepang in Malaysia.

As on the opening day, rain played a major role. Tuesday had seen a torrential rainstorm from 2-3pm, while Wednesday's rain arrived earlier - after just two hours - and fell steadily until almost 4pm.

Spies rose to the top when he edged out team-mate Jorge Lorenzo by 0.008sec on his 19th lap, just before the rain arrived.

“Today went well, the rain caught us out again but we got everything we needed to do done before lunch, including some different chassis set-ups and some electronics which we were pretty happy with,” he said. “We got down to a decent time and then obviously the rain came.”

But the bad weather didn't mean the day was over for Spies. Instead he used the opportunity to make his 1000cc rain debut.

The Texan went on to almost double his lap tally in the wet conditions and enjoyed the experience.

“It was an important opportunity,” he said. “I've never ridden this track or the 1000 in the rain before, but straight way I had good confidence and a really good feeling with the bike I'd always been decent in the rain, but have struggled for the last few years with the GP bike.”

Weather permitting, Spies and Lorenzo will continue working their way through what appears to be an extensive range of M1 developments during Thursday's third and final day.

“Jorge and I are testing the same things, just on different days,” he explained. “Luckily everything so far we've both agreed on, which is really important at this stage.”

Tech 3 Yamaha team-mates Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow were third and fourth on the Wednesday timesheets.
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