Following a three-week break, the MotoGP circus rolls in to Austria as the championship contenders take on the Red Bull Ring for the first time since 1997.
Prior to the summer break the Spielberg circuit hosted a two-day private MotoGP test. Ducati Team riders Andrea Iannone and Andrea Dovizioso, with Casey Stoner assuming the role of test-rider recorded the top three times of the day.
Michele Pirro will once again be making an appearance as a wild-card with the third Desmosedici GP of the Ducati Test Team.
Currently in eighth position in the championship, Andrea Iannone is looking forward to getting back to business and is confident of a strong performance.
“The Red Bull Ring is a new circuit for everyone but in the tests in July we immediately got to grips with the track and we were always the quickest out there.” said Iannone.
“The circuit is really nice and it adapts well to our Desmosedici GP. On this track I established a good feeling with my bike right from the start and this is a very positive aspect in view of the race.”
Andrea Dovizioso echoed the thoughts of his team-mate but is wary that things could be different come race day.
“The Austrian track adapts very well to our bike, with first and second gear acceleration and medium-long straights, and so for us it is quite easy to be fast.” said Dovizioso.
“Even though we were very competitive in the tests, we will have to see what tyres Michelin will bring for the GP, because wear is very high here, you slide around a lot and the tyres will struggle to complete a race distance.”
Wild-card Pirro is looking forward to putting the knowledge he gained at teh Austria test in to practice.
“I like the Zeltweg track a lot, and in the tests I was able to do about 20 laps: not a lot, but in any case enough data with which to start on Friday morning. The track seems to be favourable for the characteristics of the Ducati, and so I am sure we can have a great weekend – both Andreas and myself.”