Motorcycle racing champions making the transition from two wheels to four is not new. The most famous, and successful, example of which is John Surtees, who won the 500 cc World Championship four times in 12 years and Formula One (F1) once – in 1964 – with six wins, 24 podiums and 11 fastest laps.

The latest member of the motorcycle racing ranks to attempt the crossover is MotoGP world champion Spaniard Jorge Lorenzo, 29, currently riding for the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team. During testing at Silverstone circuit, Lorenzo took the wheel of a Mercedes AMG Petronas W05 Hybrid.

Previously driven by Brit Lewis Hamilton to win the 2014 F1 crown, Lorenzo – race number #99 in MotoGP – was given the chance to test the championship-winning car by mutual sponsor Monster Energy. He began testing with sessions in the simulator and a Formula Two car, before getting into the cockpit of the real thing.

“It has been a great experience, like a dream come true. The past few days for me have been very special,” said Lorenzo. “Today I experienced driving a Formula One car. I’m very satisfied with the lap time in the last run. From what the engineers were saying, my times were really competitive,” he said.

Lorenzo said the W05 Hybrid Mercedes race car was quite easy to drive, and expressed amazement at the amount of grip available in corners. “In the corners, you are in a different world, about 40 km/h faster in the middle of the corners. Also it surprised me how late you can brake and the amount of grip the car can support in full throttle in the fast corners is insane,” said the world champion.

“Between each run he’s been poring over the data, and looking to find areas for improvement. You can see why he’s a multiple world champion on two wheels,” said Richard Lane, Mercedes AMG Petronas track engineer. Lorenzo, who won the MotoGP champion titles in 2010, 2012 and 2015, is moving to Ducati Corse MotoGP team for the 2017 season.