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


Heat wave conditions, unusual for Assen at TT time, made life difficult for
Kawasaki riders, Shinya Nakano and Alex Hofmann, during today's free practice
sessions ahead of Saturday's Dutch TT.

Track temperatures soared to 48 degrees at the sun-baked Circuit van Drenthe
during the afternoon session, much higher than the 35 degree temperatures of
recent years at this race.

While the warm weather was a welcome change for riders and spectators at a
normally cool Assen, they did little to assist in Kawasaki's search for an ideal
race set-up.

Tyre assessment for Saturday's 19-lap race was the main focus today, and will
remain so tomorrow for Kawasaki and Bridgestone technicians.

A revised range of Bridgestone tyres have been made available for the unique
demands of the Assen circuit, although today's test results were inconclusive
according to Ichiro Yoda, Kawasaki's Technical Director.

Rear tyre drive-grip and race distance endurance will be further assessed in
tomorrow's two hours of practice and qualifying.

Following last week's test session at the Catalunya circuit in Barcelona revised
engine management settings, aimed at improving rear-end control under
acceleration, are being used on the factory ZX-RR machines at Assen.

Nakano finished with the tenth fastest time toda,y while Hofmann was just behind
in twelfth. Hofmann's fastest lap came in the cooler morning session.

Shinya Nakano: #56 - Tenth - 2'02.280

"The afternoon session was very difficult; I lost the good feeling I had with
the bike during the cooler morning session. I improved my lap time, but it
wasn't easy. The main problem is rear-end pumping and grip under acceleration on
corner exit. We are still looking for a tyre direction for the race and we will
try some different tyres tomorrow, hopefully with better rear-end performance.
The changes to the track are better for safety, but everyone is still adjusting
their braking points, they are different from last year."

Alex Hofmann: #66 - Twelfth - 2'02.409

"It's amazing for it to be so hot at Assen, but the heat did not favour our
performance potential at this track. For sure we need to improve our rear-end
grip and set-up for the race, at the moment it's good for a couple of laps, but
the race is over 19 laps. I had a good rhythm in the morning session and we got
a lot of set-up work done, but I'm looking for more, I want to push into the top
ten in qualifying tomorrow."

Ichiro Yoda: Technical Director

"Our main work today was tyre evaluation with Bridgestone, and we still have a
lot to do. We need to confirm the mileage and grip for the race distance; today
the performance was not ideal, with a slippery feel for both riders at the rear
end. Drive grip on the right hand side of the tyre is very important at Assen,
and we have further tyre options from Bridgestone to test tomorrow. The front is
okay; the rear is our main focus. We have also implemented a new engine
management strategy here and this is helping the riders with throttle control."


 1. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Ducati Marlboro Team  2'00.757
 2. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Gauloises Yamaha Team   +0.083
 3. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Movistar Honda MotoGP     +0.280
 4. Alex Barros (BRA) Camel Honda                 +0.296
 5. Marco Melandri (ITA) Movistar Honda MotoGP    +0.485
 6. Nicky Hayden (USA) Repsol Honda               +0.733
 7. Carlos Checa (SPA) Ducati Marlboro Team       +0.767
 8. Colin Edwards (USA) Gauloises Yamaha Team     +0.831
 9. Max Biaggi (ITA) Repsol Honda                 +1.272
10. Shinya Nakano (JPN) Kawasaki Racing Team      +1.532
11. John Hopkins (USA) Team Suzuki MotoGP         +1.532
12. Alex Hofmann (GER) Kawasaki Racing Team       +1.652