Press Release
(2005 FIM Road Racing World Championship)
Kawasaki Racing Team


The 2005 model Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR made an impressive start to the MotoGP
season, with Shinya Nakano finishing a brilliant fifth in today's Spanish Grand

From the start Nakano rode with his trademark mixture of style and aggression,
and at the end of the 27-lap race he was the first rider using Bridgestone tyres
to greet the chequered flag.

Joining Super Shinya in the points was his hard-riding German teammate Alex
Hofmann, who finished 11th with a strong performance from the fourth row of the

Today's race was the GP debut of Kawasaki's new big-bang motor. Still in the
early stages of development, the 990cc four-cylinder engine displayed its future
potential in today's windswept race at Jerez.

The latest generation of Bridgestone tyres, with stiffer case construction, also
proved ideally suited to the conditions and the Ninja ZX-RR machines of Nakano
and Hofmann.

Nakano settled into fifth place on lap one and for much of the first half of the
race he rode alone, as he tagged the leading group containing eventual race
winner Valentino Rossi.

Although pressured by Alex Barros late in the race, Nakano responded to chase
the Brazilian home, and at the finish the Japanese rider was just 0.7s behind
fourth place.

Hofmann charged into eighth briefly on the first lap, and then raced
aggressively in a tight bunch that included double World Superbike champion
Colin Edwards, Spaniard Carlos Checa and Max Biaggi.

The Kawasaki Racing Team will test at Jerez tomorrow (Monday) before moving on
to Estoril for next weekend's Portuguese Grand Prix.

Shinya Nakano: #56 - Fifth

"This is a fantastic start to the season for Kawasaki's new big-bang motor; I'm
obviously very happy. All the engineers at Kawasaki have done an excellent job,
the engine was strong and there is more performance to come. Also my Bridgestone
tyres were very good in these conditions. From the start I pushed very hard, but
I just could not stay with the leading group, it was difficult to keep pace
riding alone. I kept pushing until the finish and even when Barros overtook me I
could follow his pace and I didn't lose any more positions."

Alex Hofmann: #66 - Eleventh

"That was a tough battle in the wind and on a very dusty track. I didn't make my
best start, but I was able to make some moves and be eighth on lap one . It was
a very fast pace at the front and I had a very good race with the group that
included Edwards, Checa and then Biaggi. I was able to run the same pace through
most of the race and had no problems with the new big-bang motor or the
Bridgestone tyres. I think I showed my potential today against the guys I raced

Harald Eckl: Team Manager

"A very good start to the season with Shinya and Alex in the points, both with
very consistent performances. This race has confirmed the performance potential
of our new firing order motor and the Bridgestone tyres. Thanks to the work of
everyone in the Kawasaki Racing Team we now have a very strong platform on which
to build for the rest of the season."


 1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Gauloises Yamaha Team  45'43.156
 2. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Movistar Honda MotoGP       +8.631
 3. Marco Melandri (ITA) Movistar Honda MotoGP     +18.460
 4. Alex Barros (BRA) Camel Honda                  +26.938
 5. Shinya Nakano (JPN) Kawasaki Racing Team       +27.659
 6. Troy Bayliss (AUS) Camel Honda                 +28.509
 7. Max Biaggi (ITA) Repsol Honda                  +30.618
 8. Makoto Tamada (JPN) Konica Minolta Honda       +36.887
 9. Colin Edwards (USA) Gauloises Yamaha Team      +37.608
10. Carlos Checa (SPA) Ducati Marlboro Team        +39.678
11. Alex Hofmann (GER) Kawasaki Racing Team        +42.283
12. Toni Elias (SPA) Fortuna Yamaha Team           +55.457
13. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Ducati Marlboro Team   +1'02.372