The Winston Ten Kate Honda team left the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia, Spain early this morning, one day ahead of schedule after heavy rain prevented any further testing of the team's 2005 Honda CBR machines.
Only superbike rider, Chris Vermeulen, and Katsuaki Fuijiwara of the supersport team took to the circuit yesterday (Monday) in cold and damp conditions.
"It's unfortunate," commented team manager, Ronald ten Kate, "but we can do nothing about the weather. There is a silver lining in these clouds, however, in that we can have an extra day to prepare everything for Qatar."
The team will spend the next few days loading almost eight tonnes of equipment into 15 crates that will be shipped to Qatar early next week in preparation for a further test at the Losail circuit in Doha on 19-20 February, followed one week later by the first World Superbike and World Supersport championship rounds.
"We have been able to do further shakedown tests on Chris's and Kats's second bikes to ensure everything is working properly but there was no possibility of fully testing any new components," added ten Kate.
"We always have to balance the benefits of testing against risk," he concluded. "So, after the team launch in Milan next Tuesday, we fly straight to Qatar where we will hopefully get some dry track time at last!"