Catalunyan GP: Rizla Suzuki Friday notes

Capirossi on podium pace during first day in Catalunya Rizla Suzuki MotoGP racer Loris Capirossi was the second quickest rider during today's free practice sessions at the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona in Spain. Capirossi led the way...

Capirossi on podium pace during first day in Catalunya

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP racer Loris Capirossi was the second quickest rider during today's free practice sessions at the Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona in Spain.

Capirossi led the way for a large part of the afternoon session as he made long runs on his Suzuki GSV-R to test the durability of his Bridgestone race tyres. He was the busiest rider on track today completing 53 laps around the 4.7km circuit as he worked hard with his crew to find the most consistent set-up for his machine for Sunday's 25-lap race. Capirossi's best time of 1'43.023 was only bettered by 0.006 seconds by local star Dani Pedrosa, towards the end of the session.

Chris Vermeulen (P6, 1'43.368) was equally as active as Capirossi, as he too completed 53-laps of the Catalonian circuit during today's sessions. Suzuki's Australian racer used the two hour-long sessions to test many Bridgestone harder compound tyres to gauge their durability in the higher temperatures here today. As track temperatures rose to the mid-40ºCs, Vermeulen was pleased with the performance of his tyres and certainly has a good base setting to work from tomorrow.

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP has one more practice session to find the optimum set-up in readiness for Sunday's race. Following that the two riders have the always exciting spectacle of an hour of qualifying on Saturday afternoon to decide grid positions for Sunday's main event. Round seven of the MotoGP World Championship gets underway at 14.00hrs local time (12.00hrs GMT) on Sunday 8th June.

Loris Capirossi:

"It has not been too bad today; we are quite pleased with how things have gone. When the tyre is new we can set some good times but as it drops off we struggle a bit. We have a good idea for tomorrow though and we will try to modify the chassis to stop this happening so much. We used a different setting here today from what we had in Mugello because always we try to do something to make the bike better. We know that our rhythm when the bike is good is very good, but we have to make the bike go as well at the end of a race distance as it does at the start so we can be more competitive!"

Chris Vermeulen:

"This is a circuit I quite enjoy and Suzuki has gone quite well here in the past, and we were able to continue that today. Last night we had a lot of rain so the track started out a bit slippery, but the team did a great job and the bike worked well right away. We seemed to get the tyres working well and I concentrated on testing a few of the harder Bridgestone compounds this afternoon to see how they work in the heat -- and they did a good job. We still have a few steps to take tomorrow, we need to find an extra quarter-of-a-second a lap to be with the front guys, so hopefully we can find that tomorrow and be right up there!"

Paul Denning -- Team Manager:

"Loris and Chris have really pushed hard today and the positions reflect their efforts. The GSV-R has also worked well straight out of the box and as we saw at Mugello making a fast lap time is not our problem. What has become clear again this afternoon is that we still have some work to do to maintain the front running lap-times when the tyres drop down. Both sides of the garage have done all they can to get lots of miles under their belts and test the durability of the race tyres as much as possible. Hopefully with some refined settings tonight we will be able to do some long runs with both riders tomorrow morning, and be in reasonable shape for qualifying in the afternoon."

-credit: suzuki-racing.com

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Series MotoGP
Drivers Loris Capirossi , Chris Vermeulen , Paul Denning , Dani Pedrosa