Press Release
(2005 FIM Road Racing World Championship)
YRC News
Round 9: Donington Park, United Kingdom

Track length: 4023 m
Opened: 1977
Fastest Lap Ever: 1' 29.973 (Colin Edwards, 2004)
MotoGP lap record: 1' 29.973 (Colin Edwards, 2004)
Last year MotoGP winner: Valentino Rossi
Circuit web site:

2004 MotoGP Race Summary

Threatening rain in the early laps of the 2004 British Grand Prix could not stop
Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi from picking up his fifth win of the year in
commanding fashion. In front of 82,091 spectators Rossi's one-man charge at the
Donington track increased his championship lead to 22 points ahead of Honda
riders Sete Gibernau and Max Biaggi. Rossi's team-mate Carlos Checa made a
determined ride to sixth place.

Rossi took control of the British MotoGP from pole position into the first turn
as he attempted an early breakaway. Passes from Loris Capirossi (Ducati) and
Gibernau prevented him from such a tactic until the second lap, when he managed
to pull out a short gap of 0.7 seconds. The distance between Rossi and the rest
of the pack increased until half race distance, and his cushion of time had
grown to over two seconds. The Italian continued his race domination to build a
four second gap which he guarded throughout the final laps. Having eased off to
enjoy a victory celebration he crossed the line with a margin of 2.945 seconds
over his current 2005 team-mate Colin Edwards.

2005 Set-up report YZR-M1

Donington was a circuit born with a reputation for being challenging on both
rider and machine, a reputation that only gained further strength with the 1987
extension - carried out to allow Donington to form part of the GP calendar. It's
this 'modern' extension that has added to the complexity of the circuit layout,
which can be separated into two contrasting components. The first, from the
start finish line to the right-hander called Coppice Corner, is a flowing
sequence of medium to high-speed corners that drop down Craner Curves into the
Old Hairpin before climbing back out on the approach to Coppice. In an extreme
contrast the circuit is completed with a sequence of stop-and-go switchback and
hairpins between Fogarty Esses and Goddard Corner.

This one feature alone makes setting up a motorcycle chassis difficult, as a
fast lap will come down to a compromise in all-round set-up. Add to that the
lack of grip, which some say is due to the jet fuel residue left by the nearby
East Midlands airport, and the best result will be achieved by the rider who can
make the most of the situation.

The main aim is to find a chassis that offers a good pitching balance during
braking and acceleration - to increase the much needed grip levels. However too
much and you lose stability under brakes in the second half of the lap; not
enough and the bike will be difficult to turn through the faster sweeping
opening sequence of turns. The catch is that the first half of the circuit lends
itself to a fast lap-time, while a good set-up for the second half - the
stop-and-go addition - is where many riders can make an easy pass.

What also needs to be taken into consideration is that the undulating layout of
the first part of the circuit pushes the front of the bike a great deal, while
the second half is pretty much 'highside' territory. With this in mind softer
spring rates front and rear will be used, with the fine-tuning left to the
spring preload. This approach will improve drive and front-end feedback,
although it will come at the expense of a little braking stability into the two

As for the YZR-M1's in-line four-cylinder engine, its linear character will
prove ideal for the slick layout. Still it will be tuned to offer a strong
midrange and a progressive and predictable delivery. Confidence to use that
power on a slippery surface infested with changing cambers is the key to success