After finishing a full nine places behind his team-mate Valentino Rossi at Welkom two weeks ago, Carlos Checa believes his fortunes will change at Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez.

After finishing a full nine places behind his team-mate Valentino Rossi at Welkom two weeks ago, Carlos Checa believes his fortunes will change at Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez.

Although he had qualified 1,2 seconds slower than Rossi, Checa lost 40 seconds to him in the race with many doubting whether he was on the same team as the eventual winner. With his problems in South Africa attributed to a lack of mid-race traction he hoped he would be able to fight in front of his Spanish home crowd this weekend.

"Valentino's result in Welkom proved that the bike can go faster and, although I don't want to say I can do the same as him straight away, this provides me with some encouragement," Checa said.

"It is in our hands to improve our position and it is my biggest wish to be at a point in Jerez where I can fight at the front. After the Welkom race I had a meeting with my mechanics and we discussed the reasons behind the problems I had over the weekend.”

The recent IRTA tests at Jerez may offer some valuable data to Checa's back-up crew, as he attempts to better his recent form.

"Carlos has not had the start to the year we were hoping for, but we have every confidence in him for Jerez. His IRTA test times were good there and we expect to see him fighting at the top in front of his home fans on Sunday," Yamaha team director Davide Brivio said.

Original article from Car