Press releases from the WSBK teams and the WSBK press office after the one-day test at Imola:
THE ALTHEA RACING TEAM CONCLUDES OFFICIAL TESTING AT THE IMOLA CIRCUIT
Imola (Italy), Monday 2nd April 2012: following on from Carlos Checa and Althea Racing’s brilliant double win in yesterday’s SBK races, the team was back to work today, at the same circuit of Imola, to participate in official testing with both Checa and Davide Giugliano.
In the morning’s session, both Carlos and Davide were out on track, ready to complete the schedule of work that the team had prepared. Checa, still emotional after yesterday’s fantastic performance, got straight to work, trying a few new parts, including new brakes, with positive results. Both Althea riders also tested some new Pirelli tyres and seemed to be happy with the outcome. At the end of the two-hour session, Carlos closed with the second fastest time, 1m47.4, one tenth of a second behind Sykes, first. Davide recorded the eighth fastest lap, in a time of 1m48.0. Checa completed 32 laps, Giugliano 18. A few minutes before the end of the morning session, Lascorz was the victim of a very grave accident and, as a result, a red flag brought the session to a close.
The two Althea men decided not to test this afternoon, due to the seriousness of Lascorz’s condition. Testing closed this afternoon at 6pm. The third round of the World Superbike Championship will take place at the Assen TT circuit in the Netherlands over the weekend of the 22nd April.
“The tests we carried out this morning went well but then when I saw Lascorz’s crash, and heard how serious it was, I did not have the enthusiasm to continue. During the morning we tried a few new things regards the setting, and a few tyres. We had more tyres to test this afternoon but I wasn’t mentally fit to ride and after what happened the test lost its sense. As riders we know the risk we take but when it happens to someone that you know it’s very difficult. I’m very sorry….”
“I didn’t ride a whole lot, because after the accident we decided not to continue this afternoon. In the earlier session I worked with my technicians to resolve a few little niggles that we had with the bike over the weekend. Then we tried a new Pirelli tyre and all went well. I’m just so sorry for Lascorz and my thoughts are with him and his friends and family.”
BMW Motorrad Motorsport - WSBK - Imola - Infront Testing
Imola, 2nd April 2012. The sporting aspects were secondary at today’s official Infront testing at Imola (ITA). The day was overshadowed by a crash for the Spanish rider Joan Lascorz, who suffered a severe back injury. He was air-lifted to the Maggiore Hospital at Bologna for further tests. The whole Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport wishes him all the best.
The BMW Motorrad factory team used the test to work in several areas. Factory riders, Leon Haslam (GBR) and Marco Melandri (ITA), were both able to make further progress. The conditions were good. The sun was shining and it was warmer than yesterday, with air temperatures around 20 degrees Celsius and track temperatures around 25 degrees Celsius.
Best overall lap time: 1:47.257 min (2nd session)
Leon started the day evaluating new tyre compounds provided by Pirelli for this test. The Italian manufacturer brought one new tyre for the front and three new compounds for the rear to Imola. In the morning, Leon and his crew were also testing some adjustments to the rear end of his BMW S 1000 RR. In the afternoon, Leon worked on the electronics set-up and continued to evaluate the new tyres.
“First of all, I want to send all my best wishes to Joan and his family. It is always horrible, when severe accidents happen. Regarding my test I was pretty happy. We got through all the test items we wanted to get through and also gathered some information. We tried the new tyres and we had a few different things strategy wise to test. The times were as quick as yesterday, and on medium tyres we were even faster so I am quite happy. It was good to do a test after the race and just finalise a few things.”
Best overall lap time: 1:47.779 min (1st session)
Marco and his crew successfully worked on the chattering he was struggling with. They found a solution that helped to reduce this issue. Marco then focused on the balance of his RR and tested different suspension settings that brought improvements, enabling Marco to consistently ride lap times of 1:48.0 minutes on race tyres.
“It is very sad what happened to Joan. I wish him good luck and hope that everything is going to be well. Regarding the sporting aspects, I am really happy because I think it has been my best test day since I have been with BMW Motorrad. For the first time, we got some answers today and I am very happy about that. We mainly used the same tyre specification we had in the race to understand how much we have improved compared to yesterday and the team did a very good job. I hope that the base settings of our bike will work well on a track like Assen. I don’t know yet if we were able to 100 percent fix the chatter, but we are sure that we have improved it. I can only be positive.”
Andrea Dosoli (Head of Race Operations):
“First of all we wish all the best to Joan. It is always sad when a rider and a friend of ours gets seriously hurt. To talk about the test day: In general it is very productive to test on the same track on the Monday after the race because you can focus on the issues you were facing during the race weekend in the same conditions. We think we have found a solution for Marco’s issues, at least on this circuit, but we are confident that it will also work in Assen and on other race tracks. Apart from this, Marco and his crew have been working on different suspension balances and the rear end setting which allowed him to keep a quite fast pace on the hardest tyre. Leon spent part of the morning session and the afternoon testing the new tyres brought by Pirelli, finding good solutions that could be useful in the future. Also the job he and his crew did on electronic strategies has been positive.”
CAMIER BETTERS IMOLA WSB LAP RECORD
Team Suzuki Press Office - April 2.
Leon Camier broke the Imola World Superbike lap record today and was the third-fastest rider on track during the Crescent FIXI Suzuki team's test using a new Yoshimura-powered GSX-R1000 engine.
Following on from yesterday's second round of the World Superbike Championship at the Italian circuit, Camier completed 57 laps and finished more than half-a-second under the lap record and a full second quicker than his best lap of the race weekend.
Team mate John Hopkins put in fewer laps due to discomfort from his arm - an injury he sustained in testing for the opening round at Phillip Island in February - but he came away from the session positive after trying several new suspension settings and his next goal set for the third round of the series at Assen later this month.
Leon Camier - 57 laps - 1:47.238:
"That was a long, hard day but I'm happy with the progress we made. We were able to try out lots of different things without the pressure and stress of a race weekend and we have made significant steps forward. We've put in a lot of laps and got a lot done in many areas. The new-specification Yoshimura engine we tried today is a good improvement, but there's more to come and that makes me feel very optimistic about the future. It was good to finish in the top three today and also beat the lap record."
John Hopkins - 11 laps - 1:50.378:
"My arm was pretty sore after yesterday, but I was determined to do some work and help the boys out today. They gave me a few things to try out, including some new suspension, and I was able to give them quite a bit of positive feedback even though I didn't put in a whole heap of laps. Towards the end of the first session, my arm started to become a problem again, so we took the decision not to start the second session. There's nearly three weeks before the next round at Assen and that will allow me to get it much stronger. Assen is not such a physical track as Imola, so I am looking forward to it and being much more competitive."
Jack Valentine - Team Manager:
"We're all very proud and happy with what Leon did today. He put in the laps and worked hard all day. Setting the third quickest lap and breaking the lap record was just reward for all his efforts. It feels good to see a Crescent Fixi Suzuki up there with the fastest guys and to finish the day ahead of the likes of Biaggi, Checa and Haslam.
"John didn't do many laps, but those he did were very productive and positive. He evaluated a new set of forks, which he said gave him more feel and were also more stable. We gave him the afternoon off because there was no point putting his arm under further stress. He's got time to improve his condition now before going to Assen, where I'm sure that he will be a force again.
"The new-spec engine from Yoshimura has given the GSX-R1000 better acceleration and that, together with the improvements in the electronics, have made us all feel very satisfied indeed. Of course, there's still more work to be done but, after today's performance, we all feel very motivated and excited about the rest of the season.
"On a different note, the Crescent Fixi Suzuki team would all like to send our thoughts and best wishes to the family and friends of Joan Lascorz. We all hope he makes a full recovery after his heavy crash today."
Sykes quickest in testing on difficult day for Kawasaki
Imola (Italy), Monday 2 April 2012 - Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) set quickest time in the official one-day Superbike test session at Imola, the day after the World Championship round dominated by Carlos Checa (Ducati Althea Racing).
The day was marred by a serious crash for his Spanish team-mate Joan Lascorz, in the section between the Tosa curve and Piratella. The 27 year-old from Barcelona was immediately given circuit medical assistance and then taken by helicopter to Bologna hospital with a probable fractured vertebra.
Testing new Pirelli evolution tyres Sykes lapped in 1 minute 46.609 seconds, the new outright best lap for the Imola circuit. The 27 year-old Brit improved on both the Superpole time that he had set Saturday as well as his personal best in the race.
Tom Sykes: “Obviously it’s been difficult with the circumstances of Joan, he was just starting to go strong. Overall I’m satisfied, and it rubs salt in the wounds from yesterday because if the temperatures had been a bit higher we could have had a better run. I’ve just done a run on race tyres and I beat the outright circuit record in 46.6, beating my best on qualifying tyres and knocking point nine off my lap record. The Kawasaki has got a good base setting and we know we’re going in the right direction.”
There was good news for the Honda World Superbike Team, which after a tough weekend, placed Jonathan Rea in second position with a time of 1'47”121. British riders also claimed the next two slots, with Crescent Fixi Suzuki man Leon Camier in third with a 1'47”238, and Leon Haslam (BMW Motorrad) in fourth, one day after scoring a double podium. Max Biaggi was fifth on the Aprilia RSV4 ahead of the Ducati Althea Racing of Carlos Checa.
Times: 1. Sykes T. (GBR) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'46.609; 2. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'47.121; 3. Camier L. (GBR) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'47.238; 4. Haslam L. (GBR) BMW S1000 RR 1'47.257; 5. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'47.351; 6. Checa C. (ESP) Ducati 1098R 1'47.430; 7. Melandri M. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1'47.779; 8. Laverty E. (IRL) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'47.848; 9. Canepa N. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'47.989; 10. Giugliano D. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'48.011; 11. Salom D. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'48.066; 12. Badovini A. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1'48.149; 13. Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'48.197; 14. Fabrizio M. (ITA) BMW S1000 RR 1'48.273; 15. Aoyama H. (JPN) Honda CBR1000RR 1'48.484; 16. Aitchison M. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 1'48.915; 17. Mercado L. (ARG) Kawasaki ZX-10R 1'49.805; 18. Davies C. (GBR) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1'50.124; 19. Hopkins J. (USA) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1'50.378.
Broc Parkes (Honda Ten Kate Racing Products) went quickest in World Supersport testing, ending up with a new Imola best lap of 1 minute 51.102 seconds. The Australian was able to make up for the disappointment he suffered during yesterday’s race when he had to come into the pits to change his rear tyre.
Broc Parkes: “I’m really impressed with the time that I did, it’s the fastest I’ve ever been around here and quite a bit faster than the lap record so we can feel confident now. We’re really happy that we made some good steps, this is our first test for the whole year and the bike’s starting to feel like mine.”
Moving up to second quickest was Frenchman Jules Cluzel (PTR Honda) with a time of 1'51”431, ahead of Sam Lowes (Bogdanka PTR Honda), who finished runner-up in Sunday’s race. Race winner Fabien Foret did not take part in the test on his Kawasaki Intermoto Step machine.
Times: 1. Parkes B. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1'51.102; 2. Cluzel J. (FRA) Honda CBR600RR 1'51.431; 3. Lowes S. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1'51.848; 4. Antonelli A. (ITA) Honda CBR600RR 1'53.081; 5. Roccoli M. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1'53.230; 6. Toth I. (HUN) Honda CBR600RR 1'53.240; 7. Quarmby R. (RSA) Honda CBR600RR 1'53.358; 8. Day J. (USA) Kawasaki ZX-6R 1'53.443; 9. Scholtz M. (RSA) Honda CBR600RR 1'53.56; 10. Jessopp M. (GBR) Honda CBR600RR 1'54.142; 11. Caiani T. (SUI) Honda CBR600RR 1'57.609; 12. Pasek A. (POL) Honda CBR600RR 1'57.918.