Press Release
(2005 FIM Road Racing World Championship)
USA GP - Round 8 - MotoGP
Laguna Seca - Friday 8th July 2005 - First free practice

Troy Bayliss start well at Laguna Seca

Getting away twenty minutes later than scheduled (several stewards still had to
take their positions along the track and the entry to pit-lane had to be
extended and a concrete guard-rail moved), MotoGP restarted their engines at the
Laguna Seca circuit, eleven years after the last United States Grand Prix. There
was a great deal of interest in finding out the riders' first impressions of the
Californian track and the modifications it has undergone, above all from those
riders who have already raced at the track like the two Camel Honda team riders.
Both Barros and Bayliss consider the track to be safer than in the past, even if
several areas will still need further improvements. However both of them were
quick from the off, above all Troy Bayliss, who rode fastest at a track which
requires confident and aggressive riding, which the Australian evidently has in

Sito Pons - Camel Honda

"I have done a lap of the track and I can see that a lot of important things
have been done to improve safety, even though there are still things to be done.
Also in terms of organisation we're paying for over ten years of absence of
Laguna Seca from the world championships: I mean for things like internet and
intranet connections, the signals to the monitor and those kinds of things that
help the day to day running of the team. I hope however that things will be
sorted out over the coming hours. As for the rest I'm happy that such a great
amount of interest has been awoken in America for MotoGP, in all my experience
I've never seen it like this, and it's evident not only from ticket sales but
also from the coverage the national press is giving the event. It is so
important for the world championship to race here and I'm satisfied that we can
see both our riders amongst the quickest from the beginning. Both Troy and Alex
have raced at Laguna before, and gone well, and I hope that they can keep their
level of competitiveness throughout the weekend."

Alex Barros - Camel Honda -   1'25.048 - 7th

"Compared to eleven years ago this track is much safer. Although the asphalt
seems the same, so it's even more bumpy and undulating than before. Coming into
the straight there's a particularly big dip. In any case, this track requires
you to ride very aggressively and be very physical, especially with the MotoGP
bike compared to the 500cc. It's not a circuit where you can get away with not
riding a clean line. At the moment it's hard to work out how to set the gearbox
and the suspension; it's dirty out there and there's not a lot of grip but
gradually as it cleans up things will become clearer and we can begin to think
about tyres too. The times are sure to come down accordingly."

Troy Bayliss - Camel Honda -  1'24.547  - 1st

"I haven't been to this track for three or four years now. The track is
practically the same just with a few more bumps which seem to appear more every
year. They've done a good job in improving the safety, they've moved several
walls and the impression it gives is that overall it is much safer. It's still a
hard track though, where you have to be very aware, but it's a track I really
like, also because the last time I was here I got a good result. I'm feeling
good on the bike, but it will be a long weekend and this is just a good start,
my best so far this year. So, concentration, determination and hard work are
what we need now."