Troy Bayliss continued his superb
run of form in this early part of the season when he set quickest time for
the Ducati Xerox Team on the opening day of a three-day test in Valencia,
The test, together with the subsequent one at Misano Adriatico on
April 12/13, has been slotted into the calendar schedule after the opening
two rounds of the series by FG Sport to enable all the Superbike teams to
reach peak preparation in view of the remaining rounds of the 2006 series.
Points leader Bayliss showed more of his recent race-winning form as
he lapped the 4.005 km Ricardo Tormo circuit in 1m35.220s, set during the
morning session, to head the timesheets on the first day of action. His time
was a full eight-tenths of a second quicker than second-placed Troy Corser
(Suzuki). Ducati Xerox team-mate Lorenzo Lanzi was in sixth position, but
just three-tenths off the pace of Corser.
"Everything went OK for me today" declared Bayliss. "The only problem
is the track, which is slower than when we tested here in February because
it's a lot hotter and windier. Even though we don't have anything major to
test, I went well in the morning and was on the pace right away. Then in the
afternoon the track was dirtier and I was unable to improve so we packed in
half-an-hour before the end of the session."
"I am quite pleased with the way things went today" declared Lanzi.
"We immediately found the right settings and I was one of the few riders who
managed to lower their times in the afternoon session. There are still a
couple more days left to improve but for the moment I'm pretty sure we're
going in the right direction".
James Toseland - SBK Winston Ten Kate Honda Rider (11th position - 61 laps - Fastest lap 1'36.922);
"Today didn't go too well. We worked hard trying many solutions in our settings but we didn't make any big progress. We are looking forward for the next two days of work to improve and reach a satisfying set up for the bike. I would simply like to forget about today and start over from tomorrow. I am sure we can be a lot quicker."
Karl Muggeridge - SBK Winston Ten Kate Honda Rider (5th position - 57 laps - Fastest lap 1'36.327);
"The first day has been pretty good for us. We made some adjustments to prepare our bike and results have come. The problems I had during the Australian races are mainly gone and I am positive about the work we will be able to do in the next couple of days. I fell during the afternoon session because I expected the front tyre I was trying to be a lot better, but I guess I pushed a bit too much and found myself on the ground. Not a big problem as that was a quite slow turn and luckily I didn't hurt myself, which is the main thing."
Steve Martin, who was 10th fastest after the morning session, said: "I was lucky to get away with the crash but, although this may sound strange, I am glad that it happened in one respect. I haven't really given my body a knock since my operation last year and it is good to get it over and done with and know that I am just as strong as I used to be. I have not been too worried about lap times as I only used two rear tyres in each session and I am sure I could have bettered my time if I had stuck a softer one in at the end. Our aim is to do consistent times on race times so that we can fully evaluate the different engine configurations. There is no doubt that the new camshaft provided more torque, but at the expense of top speed down the main straight. However, on race tyres, I was able to match my qualifying time from the race weekend last year, and was able to lap in the low 37s throughout the day."
Craig Jones said: "I am reasonably pleased because, although I did not do any quick times today, we have made progress and have a direction to go in with the bike's set-up. I have found a front end set-up that I quite like and a back-end set-up that I also quite like. It's just a question of putting together the whole package now. I have gone a second quicker than when we tested here last year and we have got a game plan for tomorrow to reduce the times further."
- 1. Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) 1m35.220s
- 2. Corser (Suzuki) 1m36.080s
- 3. Barros (Honda) 1m36.292s
- 4. Haga (Yamaha) 1m36.309s
- 5. Muggeridge (Honda) 1m36.327s
- 6. Lanzi (Ducati Xerox) 1m36.360s
- 7. Walker (Kawasaki) 1m36.420s
- 8. Kagayama (Suzuki) 1m36.725s