With just one win to his name this season Dani Pedrosa wants to double that tally on home soil on Sunday at the Gran Premio Generali de la Comunitat Valenciana, and after starting the weekend third on the timesheets in Friday’s free practice he knows he needs to up the pace.
The Spanish star, who has a good record at Valencia, was just under half a second off pace man Casey Stoner’s hot lap of 1’32.813 in the hour-long opening practice and also trailed fellow Spaniard Jorge Lorenzo on the timesheet. He later explained that a race victory in front of the home fans to end the season would mean more to him than overcoming Stoner in the standings at the final round of the 2009 season.
”For a first practice session, this was OK today and we completed some valuable laps to familiarise ourselves with this circuit again,” said the man from Barcelona. “It was really windy out there and this affected the machine more in some corners than others – like in the third sector where it was quite difficult to control the bike. Still, we have time to solve this tomorrow. Also, it’s good that we got used to the windy conditions because it looks like we’ll have them for the whole weekend.”
“The track surface was not totally clean,” Pedrosa continued. “But actually the grip was good and the Bridgestone tyres were working well. There’s a gap to the riders in front and we need to make some improvements for tomorrow so that we’ve got the best chance of qualifying well. I really want to win this race – it’s more important to me than finishing third in the championship – so we need to work really hard to give us a good chance on Sunday.”
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