TROY LEADS THE ALSTARE CHARGE.
Team Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra rider Troy Corser had to settle for second best in Superpole qualifying at Phillip Island this afternoon. The man who pipped him in today's one lap shoot-out was his fellow countryman Troy Bayliss (Ducati) and now the stage is set for a titanic battle in tomorrow's pair of 22-lap races. Third quickest is James Toseland (Honda), with Steve Martin (Petronas) fourth.
It was a mixed day for Alstare Suzuki riders Yukio Kagayama and Fabien Foret. Yukio crashed in regular qualifying and bruised his right hand and the base of his spine. Then, on his Superpole lap, he ran wide exiting Siberia, went over the white line and hit the dirt. Somehow he stayed on the bike, but he lost time in the process and ended up with only the twelfth fastest time overall. Fabien continued his Superbike learning process, but failed to make Superpole by the narrowest of margins.
TROY - 2nd, 1:32.373
We struggled a bit yesterday with grip and the clutch, so we made some adjustments to the set-up and changed the clutch today. It was definitely an improvement - though not perfect yet. I think we're all going to have some sort of grip problems tomorrow if the weather stays as hot as it has been these two days. Most of us are all on the same tyres, so it's going to be a very long, hard day tomorrow. I would've liked to win Superpole - in front of all the Aussie fans - but being on the front row is what counts. There are quite a few guys in with a chance, so it's going to be a fantastic day's racing for all the fans.
YUKIO - 12th, 1:34.111
We changed the front and rear set-up from yesterday, but I don't think there was any improvement, so we will probably go back to our original set-up tomorrow. A couple of mistakes today for me. First a crash in the last corner and I hurt my hand and the bottom of my back. Then, in Superpole , I ran wide and nearly lost it when my bike went on to the dirt. Because of that I lost time andthat means I am on the third row of the grid. I need a very good start otherwise I will get held up in a group and I don't want that to happen. I hope my back is not too sore tomorrow because I need two good races and many points.
FABIEN - 18th, 1:34.513
We made some changes to the front end this morning and the bike felt a bit better. But, in the afternoon, we could not make any improvement, so we'll try another change in the tomorrow morning's warm-up. The bike is very sensitive and I am not finding it so easy to ride as fast as I would like, but I am confident that I will get there. We'll try and make it handle better over the bumps and be a bit easier to ride. At the moment I am still learning about the difference between a Supersport bike and a Superbike and I think I must change my style of riding if I want to make good progress.