Solid Start for Yamaha in Supersport The first day of qualifying got off to a steady but solid start for the Yamaha World Supersport team at Vallelunga today with Hill coming in fifth and Parkes eighth. Things were made all the more...
Solid Start for Yamaha in Supersport
The first day of qualifying got off to a steady but solid start for the Yamaha World Supersport team at Vallelunga today with Hill coming in fifth and Parkes eighth.
Things were made all the more interesting today by the weather, which more resembled British weather than Italian with rain and cool temperatures. In addition to the weather conditions, this morning's free practice session was delayed for an hour after oil was dropped on the track five minutes into the session. Following the re-start Hill put in a good number of laps, spending the time learning the track layout and getting an initial set-up.
Having tested here in July when he was third fastest, Parkes knows the track and so felt less pressure to go out, instead preferring to put a few focused laps at the end of the session once the track had dried out.
Both riders went out this afternoon determined to find the best settings for the drying conditions. Hill's intentions were clear from the start when he went fifth fastest early on and then climbed up the board further to fight with fellow Yamaha rider Vizziello for second position. Unfortunately, in the traditionally fast-paced last ten minutes Sofuoglu and Fujiwara stepped into the challenge for front row positions, pushing Hill to fifth. Hill was making a last lap push for a good position when he suffered a low-side crash. He was uninjured though and maintained provisional fifth qualifying position. Parkes spent the afternoon qualifying session trying different settings in an effort to find the best set-up for this weekend. He starts tomorrow in eighth provisional place.
Gianluca Vizziello, riding an YZF-R6 for the RG Team, had a good start to his weekend, taking second provisional qualifying position behind Charpentier.
Yamaha Team Italia rider Massimo Roccoli struggled during today's sessions. He was only able to provisionally qualify in 11th after suffering with throttle problems throughout the day.
Tommy Hill (5th - 1'40.815 - Yamaha World Supersport Team)
"This morning's session was spent learning the circuit, in fact it was quite good to have a damp session to start with because it gave me the chance to slowly build it up and get up to speed. I'm pleased with my time and position this afternoon considering it's my first time at this track and the first time in the dry! I'm happy with the race tyre we've chosen but I had trouble with the grip on the qualifier. I was pushing it on the last lap when it just gave way and I went down on the left side. I managed to keep hold of the bars, though, and re-mounted but the left bar then snapped when I braked for the next corner. The damage is minimal though. My thumb was sore when I first got on the bike but then I stopped noticing it, but it's aching again now. Looking forward to tomorrow, we'll go through all the data and see where to go from here but I'm happy for day one."
Broc Parkes (8th - 1'40.969 - Yamaha World Supersport Team)
"Today has been a bit of a mixed bag. The session this morning was damp so I didn't worry too much about set-up as the forecast says it's going to be dry here on Sunday. But this afternoon we tried a few different settings, including some gearbox adjustments, in an effort to find the right set-up. We're getting there; it's just taking a while to sort out this weekend. The good thing is that we know where we need to focus tomorrow for improvement. I'm confident that, once we get the set-up sorted, I'll be further up the grid."
Massimo Roccoli (11th - 1'41.135 - Yamaha Team Italia)
"All day I've had a problem with my throttle connection. If I touch the throttle in the middle of the corner the bike gets very nervous. We need to look at the electronic settings to see if we can resolve this problem."