MotoGP - First day of test for the Konica Minolta Honda Team - January 31st 2006
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The Konica Minolta Honda Team has started its season with the first day of test in Australia, on the fast circuit of Phillip Island. The team has worked with perfect weather conditions: 22°C air temperature and 50% humidity rate in the afternoon. In the afternoon, the temperature on the ground reached the 41°C.
Makoto Tamada, after three months from the end of the last season, devoted himself to a profitable training session on his Honda RC211V.
The strong Japanese rider made 64 laps with 1.32.40 as his best chronometric result.
Makoto Tamada - Konica Minolta Honda Rider;
"I'm happy to be back on my RC211V again and to restart appraising on track the ability of the other riders I will have to face during the coming season races. I met my team and I really appreciate the atmosphere full of warmth and of reciprocal respect where every member can express his professionalism.
The new bike has been a pleasant surprise. I was informed about the evolutions prepared by the Honda technicians and I must say that the potential seems to be definitely high. Today I have set myself the task not to force the pace. My performance has risen naturally during the day and this is the sign that my feeling with the 2006 RC211V has been, immediately, very good."
Giulio Bernardelle - Konica Minolta Honda Technical Director;
"We really can't wait checking on track the evolutions Honda made on the 2006 version of the RC211V and my first opinion is positive.
This year bike is very different from the one we used last season. We have a bigger possibility to set-up the chassis geometrical setting and the feasible interventions on the suspensions. The first impression is that there is a more sensitive reaction to the adjustments and this is important for the technicians considering the competitive level reached in MotoGP. Today Makoto came back to track after a long period of inactivity. We found him well physically trained even if the chronometric result he obtained is not of absolute value. In any case it is significant because it shows the maturity Tamada achieved: for sure there will be the occasion to push finding the best lap time. What we found useful today, is the calm of Makoto in describing his first impressions about the new 2006 bike driving. Today we start setting the suspensions, using tyres not too much different to those Michelin put at our disposal during the GP of last October"