Nurburgring: Yamaha Teams qualifying report

Haga starts from the front row Despite a couple of near highsides during his Superpole lap Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team) clung on to both his machine and a front row start for Sunday's 20-lap Superbike races at the Nürburgring.

Haga starts from the front row

Despite a couple of near highsides during his Superpole lap Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team) clung on to both his machine and a front row start for Sunday's 20-lap Superbike races at the Nürburgring. The Japanese rider had been fourth fastest going into Superpole and replicated that performance in Superpole, with a lap time of 1'56.401. Troy Corser (Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team) just missed out on a front row start, setting a best lap of 1'56.522 to go sixth on the grid, and take a second row start. Local rider Max Neukirchner scored the Superpole win, with a 1'55.471, the absolute SBK track record at this new 5.137km Nürburgring layout.

Race pace for each official Yamaha rider is already strong and they have both completed a race simulation at a high pace. Shortly after the Superpole contest was finished the skies opened and the threat of rain at this hillside circuit became a reality. There is still a chance of rain on raceday, and there has already been a wet session of sorts, on the very first day of practice.

Sebastien Gimbert (Yamaha GMT94) was a superb sixth before the Superpole contest kicked off, but after experiencing some difficulties in getting his rear tyre up to working temperature in his Superpole lap he slid down the order, ending up 15th fastest. 14th David Checa (Yamaha GMT94) missed out on Superpole qualification by a single place, while Shinichi Nakatomi (Team YZF Yamaha) improved on his day one ranking to start the races 19th.

Noriyuki Haga (4th - 1'56.401 - Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team)

"I almost highsided twice during my Superpole lap and that pulled my shoulder a bit, so I went to the Clinica Mobile to check it out. Everything is fine, just painful. We changed the bike setting from yesterday in regular qualifying and that went quite well, so we should be OK for tomorrow - if we have a dry race! Superpole was OK but we had a bit of a problem with the suspension settings. We realised problem was, so it's not a worry for tomorrow."

Troy Corser (6th - 1'56.522 - Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team)

"I made a mistake in Superpole and that stopped me challenging for a front row start. We're all set for the races tomorrow, just a couple of things to try in warm-up to see if they are even better. Our race pace is better in comparison with our single lap times anyway. I was using the camber on the kerbs in a couple of places, quite deliberately, which is something I remembered I could do from last time we raced here in 1999."

Massimo Meregalli (Team Manager, Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team)

"It would have been ideal to have both riders on the front row but the Superpole result was OK and we are quite confident. Our race simulations have been good with both riders so let's see for tomorrow. Nori is OK, no problem for the races."

Sebastien Gimbert (15th - 1'57.516 seconds - GMT94 Yamaha)

"I am very happy to have got into Superpole and to have qualified sixth overall. My Superpole lap was difficult, with lots of slides. Nothing we could do about it, the tyre just wasn't working at its best after such a short time on the track."

-credit: yamaha-racing.com

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About this article
Series World Superbike
Drivers Noriyuki Haga , David Checa , Troy Corser , Sébastien Gimbert , Max Neukirchner , Shinichi Nakatomi