Capirossi settles in as Vermeulen and Aoki get a taste of the future2007-11-06 11:28
Loris Capirossi took the first steps of his fledgling Suzuki career today as he conducted his initial shakedown test onboard a carbon-fibre dressed Suzuki GSV-R at Valencia in Spain.
The experienced Italian joined Suzuki shortly after Sunday's final round of the season here in Spain, and has immediately settled in with his new crew and environment. Capirossi made numerous changes to the bike during the half-day session and posted competitive times throughout his 35 laps.
Chris Vermeulen got his first taste of 2008 as he tested an early prototype version of the Rizla Suzuki GSV-R at the 4,005m Ricardo Tormo Circuit. He was impressed with the new machine and is looking forward to a full day's testing tomorrow to thoroughly evaluate the bike.
Joining Vermeulen and Capirossi at the one-and-a-half day test is Team Test Rider Nobuatsu Aoki. He became the first person to ride the 2008 bike in a competitive arena last month, when he raced at round 17 of the MotoGP World Championship in Malaysia. His input during the test, allied to Vermeulen's feedback, will enable the Factory engineers present at Valencia to make the necessary developments to the new machine.
Rizla Suzuki MotoGP will have a further full day at Valencia on Wednesday to continue with its test schedule as it builds up to an attack on the 2008 world title.
"The first couple of hours that I have ridden the Suzuki have been very good. The feeling in the bike is excellent and I already have a good relationship with the team, and I think for me this is the best condition that it could be. We have one more day to work, but I am very happy for the start we have had today. We need to keep our concentration for the rest of the test, but so far I am really pleased with the way things are going!"
"It's been a good first day's test for the 2008 season. We did a lot of stuff with brakes today and some compound tyre testing for Bridgestone, and we got a lot of information from those. Then at the end of the day I got to ride the 2008 prototype bike which Nobu has been testing and raced on in Malaysia. The track temperature was going down at that time, but the bike felt very good for a first run out. There were a lot of positive points and definitely something to work on. We've got a lot of work tomorrow and I'm really looking forward to it.
"It's also been great having Loris here today, he's got a lot of enthusiasm and I could see he really enjoyed riding the bike. For a first day he has been great to work with and I'm excited to have him on board. I hope we have a good season and we all work well together!"
"We have the same bike as finished the race in Sepang, and we need to fine tune the suspension because the surface character is so much different here. So we are working on the settings and some engine control management and we have made sure all the new things from Japan are working correctly. I will be doing more testing tomorrow to try out new things. I am really happy to hear Chris likes the new bike - that's really good news for me!"
Paul Denning - Team Manager:
"Sunday was a great end to the 2007 season for the whole team and today's been a really interesting and positive start to the 2008 campaign. It was a very proud and exciting moment when Loris stepped onto the bike and headed down pit-lane, and after only one lap to get used to the feeling, he produced a 1'33.8 lap-time that put a smile on everyone's face - most notably his! Hopefully this is the start of a very rewarding partnership for him and Suzuki.
"Chris did his normal hard-working and intelligent testing today on the 2007 bike, and once he had completed that he was able to get on an early version of the 2008 bike at the end of the day. The track had cooled off a bit, but his very first run put more smiles on more faces and he was able to find some characteristics in the prototype that will help us take some significant steps in the next season.
"It has been a good afternoon's work by everybody, let's hope it continues tomorrow!"
Valencia Test Day One Unofficial Classification
1. Casey Stoner (Ducati) 1'32.348: 2. Nicky Hayden (Honda) +0.828: 3. CHRIS VERMEULEN (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +0.838: 4. LORIS CAPIROSSI (SUZUKI) +0.918: 5. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) +1.039: 15. NOBUATSU AOKI (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +3.216:
Source: Team Suzuki Press Office
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