Press Release
(2005 FIM Road Racing World Championship)
Portuguese Grand Prix
Estoril, Portugal
Saturday 16th April, 2005


Gauloises Yamaha Team riders Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards will start from
the second and third row of the grid respectively in tomorrow's Portuguese Grand
Prix after a highly competitive qualifying session at Estoril this afternoon. In
bright sunshine and tepid ambient temperatures of 16 degrees, both Rossi and
Edwards mounted pole attacks in an entertaining finale to the session but were
unable to convert their good race pace into a front row grid position.

Valentino Rossi, who has taken victory for the past four successive seasons at
this circuit, qualified fourth fastest after working intensively on the race
set-up of his YZR-M1 machine until the final fifteen minutes. The World Champion
appeared to have sealed third place on the grid for tomorrow's race after
lapping inside last year's pole record but he was dislodged by a surprise late
flurry from Carlos Checa (Ducati).

Rossi's Gauloises Yamaha team-mate Colin Edwards also lost places in the late
scrap for times, making a mistake on his best lap and dropping to seventh place.
Alex Barros (Honda) took pole position with a time of 1'37.202 and is joined on
the front row by Sete Gibernau (Honda) and Checa.

VALENTINO ROSSI, 4th - (1'37.643, 28 laps)

"The bike has changed a lot since we raced here last year so we have had to work
hard on the setting. It was probably better this morning than it was in the
afternoon but it is virtually impossible to get a perfect set-up at this track
and fourth place isn't bad. I'm still having problems getting heat into the
left-hand side of the tyre. We tried some different tyres today to try and fix
that but we're still not at 100%. There are four or five guys with a good rhythm
and I think the pace will be very fast tomorrow. If the weather is good then it
should be a group race and it will be a very tough battle."

COLIN EDWARDS (1'38.003, 28 laps)

"That was tough! We've worked hard this weekend on my race pace and we're pretty
pleased with how it's looking but I had difficulties again on the qualification
tyres.  Part of the problem is that you only have two laps to get it right and
if you make a mistake it can cost you several positions on the grid. I ran a
little wide in turn one on my best lap so there are definitely a few tenths we
can make up. Generally we need to make the bike more stable and rider friendly
but we're getting there. We'll see what happens with the weather tomorrow. I'd
prefer it to be dry for the fans and the TV but I won't mind if it rains - it
would be kind of good to have a wet race at this stage of the season and the
bike felt good in the wet at the Jerez tests. Either way is good for me."


"With Valentino we spent quite a lot of the session working on his race setting.
He has a good pace but we will try to make it better in the morning. Colin also
has a good base set-up but it is fair to say there is room for improvement with
both of them. The last fifteen minutes were a good battle for the hot lap and
some riders emerged who we haven't seen much of this weekend. In any case both
our riders have reasonable grid positions and a good race pace so we are
confident.  It is going to be a very tough race. If it rains it will be even
more unpredictable!"


 1. Alex Barros (BRA) Camel Honda,                1'37.202
 2. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Movistar Honda MotoGP,    1'37.329
 3. Carlos Checa (SPA) Ducati Marlboro Team ,     1'37.456


 4. VALENTINO ROSSI (ITA) Gauloises Yamaha Team,  1'37.643
 5. Marco Melandri (ITA) Movistar Honda MotoGP,   1'37.835
 6. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Ducati Marlboro Team,   1'38.000


 7. COLIN EDWARDS (USA) Gauloises Yamaha Team,    1'38.003
 8. Max Biaggi (ITA) Repsol Honda Team,           1'38.009
 9. Nicky Hayden (USA) Repsol Honda Team,         1'38.123