First settings in the World Superbike
Max Biaggi and Troy Corser made their first turns on their respective new mounts: the Suzuki GSX-R 1000 and the Yamaha R1. At Ducati we are not yet driving but Lanzi has just been assured of regaining his place next year.
The 2007 season is slowly but surely looming for the riders of the World Superbike. Among the new Italian world champions, Lorenzo Lanzi, author of a relatively disappointing 2006 season, managed to keep his place with King Troy Bayliss.
"I was hoping it would turn out this way because this year I gave 100% even though things did not go as I expected", admits the young transalpine pilot. In 2007, he will therefore have to exceed" his 100% "to no longer remain in the shadow of the 2006 champion !
Moreover, for Paolo Ciabatti, this renewed confidence should be confirmed: "We really expect him to be a major challenger next season for his second year with the Ducati Xerox factory team.". It is not always easy to share your box with a supercharged kangaroo !
New to the Superbike arena, Max Biaggi is preparing for his comeback (read) and his first tests took place last weekend on the transalpine track of Vallelunga.
The Roman Emperor was logically welcomed there by many fans: "I know I’ve said it before but I really want to thank you again for the emotion you gave me by coming to my first day of training: you were absolutely fantastic !", he ensures visibly touched to his audience.
Max Biaggi therefore shot for three days on a track he once knew very well: "it’s funny that everyone considers that it is "my" circuit (it is located near Rome, of which Max is an honorary citizen despite his domicile in Monaco, Editor’s note), because I haven’t come since long: maybe 15 or 16 years !", recalls the Alstare Suzuki rider who had to relearn the recently modified track.
Very quickly, however, the Roman focused his work on his new mount. Not yet benefiting from the very last model of the "Gex", Biaggi had to make his mark on the K6 version and was quick to notice many differences with the MotoGP prototypes….
"First of all, the bike is heavier than the ones I used to ride and that means you have to work a lot on the balance and make the suspensions work the way you want.", notes Max, who must also learn to ride on Pirelli tires..
The quadruple 250 world champion also recalls that it has been a year since he tasted the joys of competition: "my approach is more calm than spectacular", he points out that no chrono has been disclosed…
Naturally, this learning period also involves the discovery of a new team, with whom Biaggi shares the same ambition: "be competitive when the first race starts next year"… It will be February 24 in Qatar !
For his part, Troy Corser set out to tame the Yamaha R1 on the superb Mugello track. Also with 2006 equipment, the Australian crocodile was able to appreciate the differences between his old Suz ‘and the Yam’ driven last year by Haga and Pitt.
"She impressed me on many levels", says Troy, specifying that"mid-range is vigorous and the chassis is very stable under braking". Corser and his new team took advantage of this one day of testing to settle"footrest, handlebars and rear thumb brake system".
Team manager Massimo Meregalli was also pleasantly surprised by the performance of his new rider on the 2006 R1: "the original goal was not to post particularly fast times but in the end, Troy gave us impressive results", congratulates the Italian.
Without letting any exact data filter out, Troy would have turned at the end of his 74 laps as fast as his new teammate Noriyuki Haga in other private practice. "It gives me good hope for the next tests in Valencia", concludes Troy who gives us an appointment on November 14 and 15 on the Spanish track, in 2007 configuration this time. !
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