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GP Week : Issue 156
at BRIEFLY » Impressive MotoGP rookie Stefan Bradl took a trip to the States in the break after LeMans–togetafirstlookat Laguna Seca, where he will race for the first time at the US GP. The smaller classes don’t race at the track, so he had never seen it. Honda America lent him a Fireblade fitted with production racing tyres, and he joined a track day at the Californian circuit. “You can learn a lot about a new track on the Playstation, but not about the ups and downs, like the Corkscrew.” » Honda’s chatter problems persisted at Catalunya, with setting changes only partially improving the problem, according to Stoner. “It seems to get worse the more grip there is. I wonder if it is something to do with the Dunlop rubber that the Moto2 and Moto3 classes lay on the track. But it was good to get four dry sessions and a dry race, to work on the problem,” he said. » Things your spell- checker doesn’t tell you – number 94. There was an amusing slip of the tongue in Yamaha’s post-race press release, where they described Jorge Lorenzo as having claimed “a superfluous” victory. It may prove so, if he amasses enough points before the end of the season. On the other hand, the writer probably meant to say “superlative”. In sympathy, it must be said it is easily done. The controversy triggered when satellite-team Yamaha rider Andrea Dovizioso broke ranks and bought himself the top-grade Brembo brake calipers moved up a gear in Catalunya, where team-mate Cal Crutchlow also got the brakes that two weeks before he had categorically refused to buy for himself. With his team PR organisation striving unsuccessfully to put a lid on the embarrassing affair, Crutchlow insisted on telling the truth. “I’ve got the brakes, but I’m not allowed to say so,” he said. “But I’m going to tell the truth. Andrea paid for his, but nobody’s paid for mine. My manager is looking for a sponsor, but if that doesn’t happen then I’ll be arrested for stealing.” At Le Mans, Crutchlow said he would not be paying for any of his equipment: “My job is to ride the bike, not to buy parts,” he said. The calipers are some 25 percent longer, and likewise the pads, giving more stopping power for less lever pressure. Dovizioso was used to them from his time with the factory Repsol Honda team, and bought them out of his own pocket for the Portuguese GP at Estoril. To Crutchlow it’s also a safety issue. “I nearly rammed Andrea a few times when I was chasing him at Estoril,” he said. “I had to back off.” Not only were the new brakes more powerful, they also gave a more stable brake lever, with less movement. “Before it was further away from the bar, and came back closer to the bar,” he said. The calipers cost some 60,000 Euros. BRAKES: THE CONTROVERSY WON’T STOP 12 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: MOTOGP >>> NEWS