TRANSCRIPT OF TROY BAYLISS PRESS CONFERENCE Imola, Sunday October 1st 2006 Immediately after the podium and the celebrations at Imola had died down, Troy Bayliss took part in the customary winner's press conference in the circuit's media centre.
TRANSCRIPT OF TROY BAYLISS PRESS CONFERENCE
Imola, Sunday October 1st 2006
Immediately after the podium and the celebrations at Imola had died down, Troy Bayliss took part in the customary winner's press conference in the circuit's media centre. This is a transcript of the conference.
TROY BAYLISS , Ducati Xerox - Ducati 999 F06
"Hello guys, you've all seen what happened today, I'm really happy with the way it went I'm happy for Ducati, all their guests, sponsors, everybody who had anything to do with this year with our team. And of course you can also say that Imola is a bit of a home track, only 50 kms or so from Bologna, so to take the championship in front of all the Ducati fans and also take the win was perfect for me today. That's about it really, we move on to Magny-Cours. Although I've taken the championship, we still have the Manufacturers' championship to wrap up. I think we're looking pretty good in the points but it's not over till it's over so we move on and hopefully we can have a good weekend at Magny-Cours".
OBVIOUSLY YOU WERE HAPPY TO COME BACK TO THE WORLD SUPERBIKE PADDOCK, WITH A LOT OF OLD FRIENDS THERE. AT THE START OF THE SEASON AFTER THE FIRST TEST, HOW CONFIDENT WERE YOU THAT IT WAS GOING TO BE YOUR YEAR?
"Well, obviously I was a little bit worried because I'd never ridden the 999 before and also the one-tyre rule which has everybody on Pirelli, and after the first test we had in Valencia I was still recovering with my wrist from the year before which wasn't very nice but as soon as I hopped back on the bike in Valencia, I felt like 'Wow! I was back in my old chair'. Straightaway I got a reasonably good feeling with the Pirelli tyres and when I finished the test second I thought that I was going to be a front-runner next year and maybe a contender for the championship. I think after that we moved onto Qatar, made a few changes to the bike and straightway I dropped like a second a lap, felt really at home on the bike and since then it's just been going through the motions. I've had some great races this year, I've got a great team behind me, which are very smart. I've put a lot of wins together as well in the first part of the season so we've really done our homework with the winter tests and made a really good first half, or I think two-thirds of the season, and since then it's been a little bit up and down. All the other manufacturers seem to be getting very strong towards the end of the year. I think next year is going to be a great championship, a little bit more difficult for us but we're not here for an easy job".
AT THE START OF THE SEASON THE PRESS HAD TALKED ABOUT THE BATTLE OF THE TWO TROYS. WERE YOU A BIT SURPRISED MID-WAY THROUGH THE SEASON THAT IT WASN'T YOUR FELLOW COUNTRYMAN GIVING YOU THE TROUBLE BUT OTHER RIDERS LIKE HAGA AND TOSELAND, THE HONDAS AND PARTICULARLY THE YAMAHAS?
"Yeah, I was a bit surprised because honestly I thought Troy was going to be the main guy to beat this year. He's always very but consistent but I'm not sure what happened, it's not like him. He did some great races earlier on the year but towards the second half it didn't go his way. But there's lots of great riders there and actually lots of good bikes as well, we're all on the same tyres, which makes it very even and I think it's great for the championship. It's going to be harder next year, we've got Max arriving which should be good for the championship, but we're going to do our homework, work hard over the winter tests and I'm sure we're going to be contenders again next year".
HOW DOES THIS VICTORY COMPARE WITH YOUR FIRST VICTORY IN 2001?
"Honestly there's nothing like the first time and that goes for anything, the first one is always the best! This was also great, but we sort of expected it. My first win here at Imola however was very special and to take the championship in front of all our fans here was very nice".
IN RACE 1 DID YOU HAVE A PROBLEM AND WHAT HAPPENED AT THE LAST CORNER WHEN HAGA PASSED YOU?
"I just wasn't interested!! I got a little bit hooked up with the race in the first two-thirds and realised that we didn't have the tyre. We chose the hardest tyre there was what Pirelli brought here today just to be safe and I really struggled. If we didn't have the championship on the line, I would have gone for it and not given in. The second race we chose a different tyre but also with about six laps to go it was difficult, Alex was coming through very strong but I wasn't going to give in, it was either 'crash or win'. And also I thought that I could have finished on the podium but Andrew was riding very well and I didn't want to get mixed up in a cat-fight towards the end of the race. I only needed fourth, Haga was behind me, he needed to win so I really relaxed down. In these situations you make mistakes and I made a couple and in the end I thought that if I finished fourth or fifth I wouldn't have to go to the Paddock Show but I had to go anyway!"
I'VE HEARD FROM THE DUCATI ENGINEERS THAT THEY FEEL THAT THE 999 IS REALLY UP AGAINST THE WALL AS FAR AS DEVELOPMENT IS CONCERNED AND IT'S GOING TO BE DIFFICULT TO BRING ANY MORE OUT OF IT AND THAT BASICALLY YOU'RE RACING NEXT YEAR WITH WHAT YOU'VE HAD THIS YEAR. YOU'VE ALSO GOT A 1200 THAT'S GOING TO HAVE TO BE DEVELOPED. DOES THAT CONCERN YOU THAT THE HONDAS ARE COMING ON SO STRONG, THE YAMAHAS AS WELL, LOOKING TOWARDS NEXT YEAR AND, SECONDLY, WHEN DO YOU BECOME INVOLVED IN THE 1200 PROJECT?
"What 1200 project" ?.. We'll see, well like I said next year is going to be difficult because we're going to have basically the same bike, we're not going to get many more horsepower. Since I rode the bike in 2002 it's only gained a few more horsepower, but it's a beautiful bike to ride and we're going to go away and do our homework and it's going to be ready for next year. As far as anything new that comes, I won't get involved until it gets close to race time".
HOW IMPORTANT OR HELPFUL HAS YOUR WONDERFUL TRACTION CONTROL SYSTEM BEEN IN ALLOWING YOU TO PUT IN THE KIND OF LAPS OR COME OUT OF CORNERS WHERE YOU CAN COME OUT THIS YEAR?
"Well as far as traction control goes, you can only go as fast as how much grip you have. So if you have no grip, the traction control won't let you go past that point. It all depends on the settings so you have to work on the settings and ?. who hasn't got it"?