Turkish GP: Konica Minolta Honda Saturday notes

Improvements for Konica Minolta Honda during qualifying Konica Minolta Honda made a significant improvement during today's qualifying session for the Turkish GP, which will be held here at the Istanbul Park circuit tomorrow ...

Improvements for Konica Minolta Honda during qualifying

Konica Minolta Honda made a significant improvement during today's qualifying session for the Turkish GP, which will be held here at the Istanbul Park circuit tomorrow afternoon. Following a tough first day with technical problems and a crash, team rider Shinya Nakano shaved almost three seconds off his time to qualify in a hard-fought 12th place. Qualifying was another tight affair, with just a second covering 5th placed Loris Capirossi to 18th-placed Kenny Roberts Junior. The fact that none of the teams have tested at Istanbul Park and the changeable temperatures over the weekend has left a big question mark over what tyres to use for tomorrow's 22-lap race.

Gianluca Montiron - Team Manager Konica Minolta Honda

"After a difficult day yesterday we have made a significant improvement today. Thanks to the time we lost yesterday, we had a lot of work to do and just in the final part of qualifying we found some good settings and I think Shinya was able to push a little bit harder with the softer qualifying tyre. Overall, he did a good job for us today. I think we will see a very exciting race tomorrow and warm-up will be important for us and many other teams as they refine settings further.It is hard to overtake here, so getting a good start and a good line into the first corner will be important. I think many teams and riders are in the same situation as regards the new tyre regulations - tomorrow's weather and track temperatures will be all important as to what we choose to run with in the race."

Shinya Nakano - Rider, Konica Minolta Honda (43 laps - 1' 53.988" - 12th position)

"We changed so much in the morning, adjusting the suspension settings, springs and spring rates as well as the tyres. Try as we might we couldn't get a very good feeling from the bike until this afternoon when things began to feel more positive. It's not perfect, but it has improved a lot. Tomorrow we will change a few things for morning warm-up, not great big steps, but hopefully we can find some small improvements. I still can't carry the corner-speed I want which is our problem at the moment, but we will be trying 100% and I'm hoping to get into the top 10 at least by the chequered flag."

Giulio Bernardelle - Technical Director, Konica Minolta Honda

"It was always going to be difficult to make up the time we lost yesterday. One of the problems is the difference in temperature between the morning and afternoon sessions, so that basically a tyre that works well in the morning maybe doesn't work so well in the afternoon. I think this is a common problem for the Michelin riders. I think we are seeing Michelin having the better qualifying tyres but maybe with Bridgestone having the edge with the race rubber at this circuit. Come the race we shall see. We have some small adjustments to do tomorrow morning and we have to finalise our rear tyre choice. This means we have a lot to do in just 20 minutes! The weather tomorrow is critical and I think it could be different again, as it has got warmer and warmer over the weekend so far. This means the weather could well make our tyre choice a little like Roulette!"

-credit: kmh

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Loris Capirossi , Shinya Nakano , Kenny Roberts