Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies pose with the new 2011 Yamaha MotoGP bike
MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo has said the whole Yamaha team will benefit this year from the good relationship between him and team-mate Ben Spies.
Lorenzo and former team-mate Valentino Rossi were fierce rivals but the mood is now much better the Spaniard said.
"Ben's serious on the track like me but we have no problems and I don't think we will in the future either," he said.
"It's good to have a good relationship, not just for us but to help Yamaha to develop the bike."
Lorenzo also revealed that he thought the American, who earned his factory-team chance after impressing for the satellite Tech3 Yamaha team last season - when he was named rookie of the year - could be a serious contender this year.
"I think Ben is going to fight for the championship. He is very fast and has already shown he can fight to the front of the pack and was the best satellite rider last year."
Lorenzo, 23, romped to his first elite-class world title last season as rivals such as Rossi and Casey Stoner were plagued by injury and technical problems but said he was full of confidence ahead of the new campaign which starts in Qatar on 20 March.
"I'm more relaxed than last year, not because I am the world champion but because I am older so I have more experience," he added.
"Every year I try to be more relaxed, and with a championship on your record you see things a bit differently."
When asked about his impressions of his new YZR-M1 bike, Lorenzo admitted: "I don't think any rider is ever totally satisfied.
"[However,] I understand it is really difficult to improve a MotoGP bike at this level when it is already so successful."
Spies said he felt under less pressure this season than last, but knew what he had to do this year to maintain the progress of his career.
"Last year I needed to prove something which I did. Now I'm on the factory team I feel I worked hard last year to get there and deserve it," he said.
"Now I need to keep giving 100%, I've got a great crew behind me and am riding for a great manufacturer.
"We should have a great bike this year and I've got a world champion team-mate so I've got the best of the best.
"This is the last step, MotoGP on a factory bike, the only thing left to do in a rider's career is win a MotoGP race and win a MotoGP championship and that's not impossible."