#QATARTEST: Jonas Folger leave Qatar highly confident
The 23-year-old German MotoGP™ rider feels well prepared for his new challenge in the premier class, after he impressed again during the final pre-season testing’s this weekend at the Losail International Circuit.
Folger also confirmed during the final evening of the three-day test under the bright light of the enormous floodlight system at the desert track that he already mastered the step to MotoGP™ successfully. For the conclusion of his season preparations, however, a big schedule awaited the surprisingly rider from Bavaria.
After some tests of different settings to his Yamaha YZF-M1, it was necessary to complete a race simulation on Sunday evening. For this task, his race bike was exactly with the same setup prepared as Folger will race in his debut in the highest league in two-wheels racing during the Grand Prix of Qatar in two weeks. The long run itself as well the results of this simulation further increased his confidence.
So to speak, as a peak during the last session, Folger posted seventh fastest lap time around the massive 5.5 kilometres long Losail circuit. Folger finished the Qatar test eight fastest overall, just less than a half of a second off the best marker, set by the Spaniard Maverick Vinales. Folger was again the fastest rookie rider.
The opening round the 2017 MotoGP™ World Championship takes place in two weeks with the meanwhile traditional and spectacular night race at the Losail International Circuit close to the Persian Gulf.
#94 Jonas FOLGER (Monster Yamaha Tech 3, Yamaha YZF-M1), P8 – 1´54.807 (131 Laps in total):
“We’re, of course, very pleased with the outcome of this test. Our list of tasks for the final day was very extensive again, including also a full race simulation over 22 laps. This is the same number of laps as for the race in two weeks. In any case, we succeeded during this task too. For myself, however, there were a few completely experiences I made, as well as I’ve now also a clear idea, what to expect in a Grand Prix.
“As discussed prior to that run, I’ve switched through all mapping settings with the continuation of the distance. With an increased number of laps, a different mapping is provided which comes to use when the tyres are dropping and the fuel becomes less. Exactly this process I did during the simulation and it worked out perfectly to our expectations. In addition, my pace was very constant from the first stages till the end. Apart from a few really strong lap times, they were very appealing in every stage.
“The fact that the tyres drop down quite quickly was nothing new for me. But then, the performance remains fairly constant until the end. Beyond that, however, the bike is getting lighter with less fuel in the tank. I’ve learned a lot about these things today so, therefore it’s necessary that you change your riding during a race and adapt to the situation. In fact, you’ve to use two different riding styles.
“During the early stages with new tyres you can brake late into the corners whilst this is no longer possible with the lighter bike and used tyres. So, you must decelerate the bike on the straight and release the brake before entering the corner. In any case, I managed it well to adapt my riding to this as well the mappings, which already were setup with the same setting for the first race, worked out perfect too.
“Over the course of these three days, I learned a lot again and I could significantly increase my confidence with the bike. The latter was illustrated very clearly during our race simulation, when I rode very safe and fast at the same time. I understand the Yamaha much better now, especially when the conditions change. I think, we’re well prepared for the opening stages of the championship. But a race weekend is always a different story compared to a test.
“In any case, this test has brought many positive conclusions once again. Our schedule was very tight during the last three days but we’re able to try and test everything from A to Z and working on every detail what we had planned for. In the end, we succeeded in every point and we reached our goals in every respect.
“This applies not only for these final preparations, but also to the entire work done during the winter month. We can be very satisfied and head now calmed down into the short break before the championship’s kick-off. A big thanks to my team and everyone else for the support and great help during the last month.”
MotoGP™ Test Losail – Combined Days:
1 Maverick VINALES / SPA / Movistar Yamaha MotoGP / Yamaha / 1´54.330 (Session 3)
2 Andrea DOVIZIOSO / ITA / Ducati Team / Ducati / 1´54.401 +0.071 (Session 3)
3 Dani PEDROSA / SPA / Repsol Honda Team / Honda / 1´54.469 +0.139 (Session 3)
8 #94 Jonas FOLGER / GER / Monster Yamaha Tech 3 / Yamaha / 1´54.807 +0.477 (Session 3)