POSITIVE DEBUT FOR DUCATI XEROX TEAM'S 2006 RIDERS - LANZI AND BAYLISS SET QUICKEST TIMES AT VALENCIA
Valencia (Spain), Tuesday 15 November 2005: The Ducati Xerox Team's 2006 riders Troy Bayliss and Lorenzo Lanzi finally got down to some dry-weather running as the conditions improved on the second and final day of Pirelli tyre testing for the top World Superbike teams at Valencia.
The two Ducati Xerox Team riders for 2006 set the quickest times over the two-day test, thus completing their official debut for the Italian factory team.
After yesterday's wash-out, when few riders ventured out onto the track in the wet, conditions were much improved today and Troy was able to ride his Ducati 999 for the first time, together with new team-mate Lorenzo Lanzi.
Bayliss proved himself to be in perfect harmony with the new bike, and the 36 year-old Australian completed 49 laps to get used to a Ducati Superbike again after a three-year gap. Despite a still not entirely healed left wrist following a motocross accident in September, Troy was immediately on the pace and his time of 1m36.1s was good enough for second position behind Lanzi.
"It was a really good day" declared Troy, "and I was surprised how well my wrist stood up. I had a bit of pain on the brakes and when I pushed on the bars, but I still set some good lap times. I was really comfortable with the team and the bike felt like my old armchair! Now I just want to go away and get stronger and fitter for Qatar in three weeks time."
After yesterday's debut in the wet, when he set quickest time, Lorenzo Lanzi continued to impress on the other Ducati Xerox 999. The 24-year-old Italian, winner of two races in his debut year in Superbike, repeated his form today, setting quickest time in 1m35.7s.
"I am really pleased with my performance in these two days" commented Lanzi. "I did 38 laps yesterday and 57 today and I was the quickest overall, even though my motivation is still not at 100%. I like the 999 with the new suspension developments and the tyres as well, and yesterday we also had a good opportunity to lap in the wet, so I'm satisfied."
The Ducati Xerox Team's next and final testing session this year is scheduled for December 4-6 in the Gulf state of Qatar, the venue for the opening round of next year's championship.
UNOFFICIAL TIMES (courtesy of Pirelli): 1. Lanzi (Ducati Xerox) 1m35.7s; 2. Bayliss (Ducati Xerox) 1m36.1s; 3. Kagayama (Suzuki) 1m36.3s; 4. Haga (Yamaha) 1m36.6s; 5. Muggeridge (Honda) 1m36.9s; 6. Walker (Kawasaki) 1m37.0s; 7. Pitt (Yamaha) 1m37.2s; 8. Nieto (Kawasaki) 1m37.3s; 9. Toseland (Honda) 1m37.5s; 10. Laconi (Kawasaki) 1m39.7s.