TOP FIVE FOR HAGA AND FABRIZIO (DUCATI XEROX) IN FIRST QUALIFYING AT IMOLA. Imola (Italy), Friday 24th September : a positive first qualifying session for Ducati Xerox riders Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio; among the fastest on track in both...
TOP FIVE FOR HAGA AND FABRIZIO (DUCATI XEROX) IN FIRST QUALIFYING AT IMOLA.
Imola (Italy), Friday 24th September : a positive first qualifying session for Ducati Xerox riders Noriyuki Haga and Michel Fabrizio; among the fastest on track in both of today's sessions, the factory riders concluded qualifying in fourth (Haga) and fifth (Fabrizio) position.
This morning, in the first half of the free practice session, both riders had some difficulty. Michel's bike came to a stop during his first exit and Nori later rode too close to the flexible curb, touching it at high speed his right knee while exiting the penultimate corner, and causing severe swelling and bruising to his lower leg. From mid-session on however, both rider started to make good progress, Fabrizio making a string of fast laps to finish in third place and Haga, having lost precious time after the incident, closing in tenth.
Later, in first qualifying, both Noriyuki and Michel made a strong start. Mid-session Nori projected himself to the top of the timesheets with a very fast time of 1.48.6. This remained his best lap of the session; the Japanese rider thus concluded first qualifying in fourth position. Michel, consistently fast, didn't record his fastest lap until the very last minutes (1m48.7), lying in fifth at the session's end.
Noriyuki Haga 1m48.6
"Even though I don't have exactly the level of feeling that I had during the tests, I must say that I'm satisfied. The conditions, the track temperature for example, are very different compared to how they were in the summer of course and unfortunately the tyres might not be the best ones for today's conditions but, if we manage to improve rear feeling, we'll be able to make two great races on Sunday I think."
Michel Fabrizio 1m48.7
"We've started well, after the initial technical problem that is! We have been making good progress this afternoon and I've feeling quite confident. They say it will be wet tomorrow which will complicate things of course but for now I've not got any problems really, though I hope I can improve further tomorrow, weather permitting."