Jorge Lorenzo believes he can challenge the Hondas for pole position at the Sachsenring after a competitive day for the Yamaha Factory squad on Friday.

Lorenzo continued the form that carried him to a stunning victory at Mugello two weeks ago and led the second practice session in the closing stages before Marco Simoncelli edged him out by 0.095s.

But the reigning World Champion was encouraged by the performance of the YZR-M1 as the day unfolded and feels the team are geared up for a pole position challenge tomorrow.

“I am pretty satisfied because I have improved my lap times today. I am almost faster than last year and I look forward to making another step tomorrow. We have made some changes and I feel much better on my M1; faster and more competitive! The slow corners are tough, but in the faster ones I take some tenths, especially T3 and T4. I hope tomorrow the temperature can be even hotter and we can fight for the first row.”

Team Manager Wilco Zeelenberg was particularly happy with the performance of the Spaniard bearing in mind his day's running was all done on the harder tyre. Zeelenberg is happy with the state of the YZR-M1 in race trim and is looking forward to seeing how it performs in qualifying.

“This afternoon went quite well compared to this morning. The track temperature was much higher and that helped set up and especially the tyres. Jorge was very consistent and we managed to improve stability and turning so we are quite satisfied. We did everything on the hard tyre so let's see if tomorrow we are able to make another step.”

Lorenzo trails championship leader Casey Stoner by 19 points and the Australian was two places behind him in fourth. The German Grand Prix weekend continues with FP3 tomorrow morning.