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


The blistering desert temperatures of Qatar will require little acclimatisation
by the MotoGP circus, which has arrived directly from the tropical heat of
Sunday's Malaysian Grand Prix.

And the Qatar Grand Prix, to be raced on Saturday October 1st, is eagerly
anticipated by Kawasaki Racing Team riders, Shinya Nakano and Olivier Jacque.

Both riders were early retirements from the Malaysian Grand Prix, in frustrating

Going the full distance of the 22-lap race at the Losail International Circuit,
at a competitive pace, will go a long way towards erasing those memories.

Nakano was unceremoniously bundled out of third place on lap two at Sepang, an
incident that momentarily had his frustration level hotter than Qatar's desert

But the Japanese ace has quickly turned his focus to the challenge of this
track, where he qualified fifth last year - just 0.3s off pole position. He was
then running strongly in third place in the race before a mechanical problem
forced an early retirement

Based on similarly hot conditions at Sepang last Sunday, Nakano believes the
current Ninja ZX-RR and Bridgestone tyre package has a lot to offer this weekend.

Jacque was also an early retirement from Sepang because of a minor technical
glitch, and he is keen to build his race mileage after limited Grand Prix
opportunities this season. The Doha experience will be all new for the
Frenchman, who is making his first visit to the Losail International Circuit on
the outskirts of Doha.

That means learning the circuit and adapting to tricky opening day practice
sessions, when sand blown onto the track creates low grip levels and a single,
and slippery, narrow racing line.

As the track is cleaned and more rubber laid down lap times drop dramatically,
with the fastest conditions usually present for MotoGP race time on Saturday.

Jacque is again replacing Kawasaki's injured team rider Alex Hofmann.

The 5.3 km Losail International Circuit was opened in 2004, in time to host the
inaugural Qatar Grand Prix, bringing world championship motorcycle racing to the
region for the first time.

Shinya Nakano: #56

"This week I hope to see the chequered flag, if no one bumps into me like at
Sepang. I just want the opportunity to race in conditions that I think will suit
the ZX-RR and Bridgestone tyres, and I remember last year I was third before my
bike stopped in the race. I like the track, especially the fast flowing parts
like the long double-right corner after the hairpin, and our new motor
specification should help at this track. The most important considerations at
Losail are to be careful on Friday when the track is sandy and slippery, almost
like rain, and to find a good feeling with the front. Fortunately Bridgestone
have made very good steps with both front and rear tyres, as we saw in Motegi
and Sepang, so this will be an advantage."

Olivier Jacque: #19

"The Losail circuit is completely new for me so I will take a scooter and try
and learn the track before practice, plus study the telemetry map to get an idea
of speeds and gears. But ever since I started racing I've never had a big
problem memorising tracks so it should be okay. The worst part about not
finishing the Sepang race is that it robbed me of racing laps on the ZX-RR,
that's what you need at this level, there is only so much practice and testing
you can do. So I hope to be more competitive at Qatar and certainly the new
Bridgestone tyres will be a big help, especially with the improvement in drive
grip and traction."

Harald Eckl: Team Manager

"I think the Kawasaki team can be very optimistic about the Qatar Grand Prix.
The track layout fits our package very well, with Shinya's fluid riding style
combined with the current performance strengths of the ZX-RR. Combine this with
the impressive tyre development programme of Bridgestone and it looks like we
have a very good opportunity. The circuit does not place high demands on engine
power, there are lot of rolling throttle and flowing sections, and I think we
saw at Sepang that Shinya is quite capable of racing at the front."