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


With a stunning surge on the final lap, Japanese race ace Shinya Nakano rode his
Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR into a hard-earned seventh place in today's Australian
Grand Prix.

In a breathtaking finish to the 27-lap race, Nakano crossed the line just 0.04s
ahead of factory Honda rider Makoto Tamada who was eighth.

The three-way photo-finish also included Yamaha's Toni Elias who was ninth,
just 0.001 behind Tamada, as the trio flashed across the line side-by-side.

Nakano's teammate Olivier Jacque was classified 16th, two laps down, after
making a pitstop to change a rear tyre.

The sun-soaked race at Phillip Island was won by Valentino Rossi and watched by
43,400 spectators.

It was another superb display of clever race craft by Nakano, who battled a
persistent gearbox downshift problem from the start that compromised the braking
performance of his bike.

But over the final five laps Nakano was able to use the consistent race grip on
the critical left side of his Bridgestone rear tyre to close on, and then
outsmart, Tamada and Elias.

Nakano started the final lap in ninth place, in the slipstream of his rivals. He
passed Tamada on the fast, sweeping back section - on the run from Siberia
corner - and then timed his flying finish to perfection.

Nakano rocketed off the long and fast turn 12 and dived past Elias to claim
seventh as the chequered flag was waved.

Because of the downshift problem Nakano was forced to spend most of the race
patiently following Tamada and Elias, so as not to risk crashing under hard

Nakano's seventh place allowed him to consolidate his tenth place in the
championship standings, ahead of nearest rival, Tamada.

Jacque was bitterly disappointed with his race after running straight-on at the
first hairpin twice, before stopping on lap 11 for a new rear tyre. He rejoined
the race and set a string of consistent laps to finish the race just out of the

Shinya Nakano: #56 - Seventh

"Only the final lap was exciting for me, at 100%, but the rest of the race was
not much fun - just cruising behind Tamada-san and Toni. After practice I did
not expect this result, so that is the good point, but I'm not happy because we
did not achieve our maximum potential today. From the start I had a downshift
problem, and after missing a gear once in the early laps, I had to be careful
under braking. I could only follow, not race. But my rear Bridgestone gave me
the advantage on the final lap, especially on the drive-side - the left - and
the ZX-RR motor was working well, so I attacked and was able to finish seventh.
I couldn't push before that because of the gearbox, and also a lack of feeling
from the right-side of the rear tyre."

Olivier Jacque: #19 - Sixteenth

"I feel very bad. The only consolation is that I rejoined the race and made it
to the chequered flag and got more experience on the ZX-RR. For the whole
weekend I have had a problem with braking stability, the bike was very sensitive
in this area. After twice going straight at the hairpin I came in and changed
the rear tyre and, after going back out, I was able to pass both Vermeulen and
Hopkins, and the bike was fast and consistent. It's a shame, I wanted to fight
for a better result than this."

Harald Eckl: Team Manager

"Again, Shinya has taken the maximum possible from a difficult situation - his
timing on the final lap was just perfect. We had some problems this weekend with
set-up, both braking stability and grip, and this result was unexpected, but
very satisfying after all the hard work by the team."


 1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Gauloises Yamaha Team  41'08.542
 2. Nicky Hayden (USA) Repsol Honda                 +1.007
 3. Carlos Checa (SPA) Ducati Marlboro Team         +4.215
 4. Marco Melandri (ITA) Movistar Honda MotoGP      +4.232
 5. Sete Gibernau (SPA) Movistar Honda MotoGP      +14.088
 6. Colin Edwards (USA) Gauloises Yamaha Team      +33.200
 7. Shinya Nakano (JPN) Kawasaki Racing Team       +45.055
 8. Makoto Tamada (JPN) Konica Minolta Honda       +45.103
 9. Toni Elias (SPA) Fortuna Yamaha Team           +45.104
10. John Hopkins (USA) Team Suzuki MotoGP          +50.260
11. Troy Bayliss (AUS) Camel Honda                 +50.697
12. Ruben Xaus (SPA) Fortuna Yamaha Team         +1'08.324
16. Olivier Jacque (FRA) Kawasaki Racing Team      +2 Laps