FOR SUZUKI ALSTARE
Yukio Kagayama, Max Neukirchner and the Suzuki Alstare team left Kyalami circuit in South Africa in a positive frame of mind after three days of testing the all-new 2009 GSX-R1000 K9.
A lot of work was completed in the three days, but the team used the available time well and gathered a lot of information and data, which they will take back the workshops and begin the work analysing all the information before preparing the bikes for the next test in January.
Italian Michel Fabrizio (Ducati) posted the fastest lap of the test with a time of 1:39.714. Second quickest was American Ben Spies (Yamaha) with Noriyuki Haga (Ducati) third.
"Generally I am happy about this test and the work we did here. It's always difficult testing or racing at altitude, but we managed to try lots of different things and made a lot of progress. We changed the balance of the bike for the afternoon and I was doing a long run when the red flag came out and that prevented us getting some valuable data. We had some problems yesterday, but still went fast, but today we had problems and could not go fast! It wasn't so hard to do good lap times, but it was hard to then shave off those fractions of a second and go even quicker. We have learned a lot about this new bike and my team and I are happy because we know that we'll improve further at the next test. For me, it was important for me to understand this bike and I feel that I have achieved that goal."
"We changed the set-up today and in the morning we definitely improved from yesterday. For me, one of the problems was the bumpy track because that upset the bike a lot and made it difficult to ride smoothly. I wanted to do a lot of work with the engine, but maybe high altitude is not so good for working with the engine because we didn't get the answers we wanted. We tried some tyres in the afternoon but when it was very hot - the track temperature went over 57 C - so the bike was not so easy to ride. But, don't forget that this is a new bike and we have a lot to learn before we push at the front.
"I feel positive though that we will meet this challenge."
Fastest laps of the 3 days: Fabrizio (Ita-Ducati) 1'39"714; 2. Spies (USA-Yamaha) 1'39"978; 3. Haga (Jpn-Ducati) 1'39"984; 4. Rea (GB-Honda) 1'40"035; 5. Checa (Spa-Honda) 1'40"170; 6. Max Neukirchner (Ger-Suzuki Alstare) 1'40"394; 7. Yukio Kagayama (Jpn-Suzuki Alstare) 1'40"675; 8. Biaggi (Ita-Aprilia) 1'40"768; 9. Nakano (Jpn-Aprilia) 1'40"968; 10. Kiyonari (Jpn-Honda) 1'41"067; 11. Corser (Aus-BMW) 1'41"102; 12. Sykes (GB-Yamaha) 1'41"562; 13. Xaus (Spa-BMW Motorrad Motorsport) 1'41"996.