Valencia: Ten Kate Honda Friday report

MUGGERIDGE FIFTH FASTEST IN VALENCIA Karl Muggeridge set the fifth fastest time in today's opening qualifying session for round three of the 2005 World Superbike championship at Valencia in Spain. In a hotly contested session, completed in warm...

MUGGERIDGE FIFTH FASTEST IN VALENCIA

Karl Muggeridge set the fifth fastest time in today's opening qualifying session for round three of the 2005 World Superbike championship at Valencia in Spain. In a hotly contested session, completed in warm and sunny conditions, Australian Troy Corser was fastest today with just over one second separating the next twenty riders.

Muggeridge's Winston Ten Kate Honda team-mate Chris Vermeulen was sixteenth fastest this afternoon as he continued with the development of the Honda CBR1000RR. Coming off a podium finish in race one of the last round in Australian, Vermeulen will be looking to tomorrow's qualifying session and Superpole event to improve his starting position for Sunday's two 23-lap (92km) third round races.

Ronald ten Kate - team manager:

"Chris didn't use a qualifying tyre this afternoon as he continued to look for the best setting on his CBR. We're using a lot of new chassis components this weekend and he tried many different set-ups today. That continual testing makes it difficult to switch the concentration to one fast qualifying lap but he was in the top five in practice this morning so should be up there again tomorrow. Karl is happy with the progress we're making and every adjustment we make to the settings seems to be an improvement for him. We've got a lot of data to study tonight, though, and some more things to try tomorrow."

Karl Muggeridge - fifth fastest, 1m37.146:

"I made a small mistake in turn six on that fast lap and very nearly lost the front. It was the biggest front end slide I think I've had on the superbike and it took all the strength I could muster to save it - legs, arms, everything! The track seemed to get more slippery as the session went on and it became difficult to match our times from this morning. I was having to concentrate hard to get everything right but I certainly had some grip problems on the last two sectors of the circuit. We've tried lots of things today around the front forks and things are definitely improving. But I think we'll all be spending a long time looking at computer screens tonight to understand what progress we've made."

Chris Vermeulen - sixteenth fastest, 1m37.878:

"I didn't put in a qualifier this afternoon because we've been trying so many different things on the bike - especially around the front forks. If I were this far back with a qualifying tyre I'd be a lot more worried than I am! We're still suffering from not getting much testing in before the season started and that means we have to try new things during a race weekend which is never ideal. I was fairly competitive during free practice and for most of that qualifying session before everyone else put in qualifiers; but for sure we've still got a lot of work to do before we find a setting that will work well for the races on Sunday."

-tkh-

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Series World Superbike
Drivers Troy Corser , Chris Vermeulen , Karl Muggeridge