Press Release
(2005 FIM Superbike World Championship)
YRC News
WSB : Haga fights back as Pitt goes fastest
Round: 4 - Italy
Circuit: Monza
Date: 7 May 2005
Temp: 40C
Weather: Sunny
 
Yamaha Motor Italia riders Andrew Pitt and Noriyuki Haga showed true grit to
post second and third row starts in today's grid deciding superpole session at
Monza.

Pitt will start tomorrow's two 18-lap places from sixth on the grid, holding his
position from the two combined qualifying sessions. The Australian made good
progress throughout the day, slicing almost 1.4 seconds from his best time on
Friday. The 29-year-old, whose parents have travelled over from Australia to
watch him race this weekend, also demonstrated the pace of the rapidly improving
Yamaha by taking his YZF-R1 through the speed trap at a mind boggling 310kph
during the afternoon practice session - the fastest of the weekend.

Superpole proved to be a test of team-mate Haga's resolve as he fought injury to
post his fastest lap of the weekend and move up to 11th on the grid, an
improvement of one place on his pre-superpole position. The Japanese ace had
been involved in a nasty tangle with Yamaha Motor France rider Sbastien Gimbert
in the preceding free practice session. Haga sustained injuries to his left hand
and upper arm and although initial tests show no broken bones, Nitro Nori was
clearly in pain as he mounted his spare YZF-R1 for his flying lap. Despite
riding a machine running different specification suspension to his preferred
machine, Haga's 1:49.279 lap time was his best of the weekend.

Yamaha Motor France rider Norick Abe will start his first race at the historic
Monza circuit from 14th on the grid after improving his Friday time by almost
two seconds. The Japanese rider was once again the most active rider on the
track, clocking up 50 laps of the 5.7km circuit over the two one hour qualifying
sessions. Team-mate Gimbert was unhurt in the incident with Haga, although he
too was forced to use his spare bike in superpole. The Frenchman was
understandably below par in superpole and ended the day qualifying in 16th
position.

Pole position for tomorrow's races goes to Haga's friend and birthday boy Yukio
Kagayama (Suzuki), whose 1:47.439 lap time narrowly edged out team-mate and
championship leader Troy Corser. Rgis Laconi (Ducati) and Karl Muggeridge
(Honda) complete the front row.

Andrew Pitt (Yamaha Motor Italia)

"Sixth is good but I'm still a bit disappointed not to have done my best lap of
the weekend in superpole. I know that I can go faster and I think that really I
took it a bit to carefully, but we're ready for the races and that's the main
thing. We should be in pretty good shape tomorrow: we've found a good set-up and
we've been able to improve the stability under braking from yesterday. Our top
speed has been good too and this is obviously very important around here."

Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia)

"Superpole was difficult as I had to use my spare bike and I this had different
settings to the one I used most of the weekend. It's ok that I did not lose any
places in superpole but I think that without injury and on my other bike I could
have made the second row. My hand is hurting and also I do not have much feeling
in the top of my arm. The doctor took some X-rays and it looks like a T-bone
steak - but no broken bones! For the race I hope to get a good start. If I can
get away well then I am sure we can get a good result."

Massimo Meregalli (Team Coordinator, Yamaha Motor Italia)

"I have a positive feeling for the race tomorrow. Every race we make a small
improvement and that has continued here. We worked hard to improve the top speed
and although we expected some gains we did not expect quite such big
improvements. Tomorrow it is very important to make a good start and be involved
with the train for the lead. If our riders can get away at the front then I am
confident that we can have a good result. Noriyuki did a good job today and we
hope that the injuries cause him no problems tomorrow. I am not so worried about
the hand, but maybe if the feeling is not there in his upper arm then this could
cause him some problems changing direction through the high speed corners.
Andrew again gives us a good feeling and tomorrow I think that he is able to
make some more improvement."

Norick Abe (Yamaha Motor France)

"Today I was able to learn more about the circuit and improve my position. So
far every circuit we have raced at is also in MotoGP, so this is the first
superbike race where I have also had to learn the circuit. Monza looks very
simple but actually it is not so easy to learn, so I am happy with the
improvement we made."

Sbastien Gimbert (Yamaha Motor France)

"This is my first time at Monza and I have made improvements in every session -
until superpole. I had to ride my spare bike after the crash with Haga. There
was a misunderstanding and we touched on the entry of the corner. I am ok and I
hope Noriyuki is too. For the race we are feeling ok but will just have to see."

Round: 4 - Italy

Circuit: Monza
Circuit Length: 5792m
Date: 7 May 2005
Temp: 40C

Session 2 :

Pos.Rider          Manufacturer  Nat.                             Superpole
 1  Y. Kagayama    Suzuki        JPN   1'48.113     1' 47.726     1' 47.439
 2  T. Corser      Suzuki        AUS   1'47.878     1' 47.788     1' 47.446
 3  R. Laconi      Ducati        FRA   1'49.021     1' 47.918     1' 47.885
 4  K. Muggeridge  Honda         AUS   1'48.203     1' 47.143     1' 48.054
 5  C. Vermeulen   Honda         AUS   1'48.849     1' 47.526     1' 48.128
 6  A. Pitt        Yamaha        AUS   1'49.000     1' 48.065     1' 48.580
 7  C. Walker      Kawasaki      GBR   1'49.423     1' 48.967     1' 48.613
 8  J. Toseland    Ducati        GBR   1'48.846     1' 48.698     1' 48.695
 9  P. Chili       Honda         ITA   1'49.595     1' 49.044     1' 49.245
10  G. Bussei      Kawasaki      ITA   1'50.348     1' 49.186     1' 49.245
11  N. Haga        Yamaha        JPN   1'49.520     1' 49.402     1' 49.279
12  G. Nannelli    Ducati        ITA   1'48.809     1' 48.809     1' 49.372
13  J. Cardoso     Yamaha        ESP   1'50.598     1' 49.452     1' 49.401
14  N. Abe         Yamaha        JPN   1'51.367     1' 49.520     1' 49.911
15  M. Sanchini    Kawasaki      ITA   1'51.114     1' 49.561     1' 50.038
16  S. Gimbert     Yamaha        FRA   1'51.472     1' 49.649     1' 50.353
20  G. Vizziello   Yamaha        ITA   1'51.158     1' 49.943
21  L. Alfonsi     Yamaha        ITA   1'51.470     1' 50.000
28  P. Blora       Yamaha        ITA   1'52.825     1' 51.365
29  M. Praia       Yamaha        POR   1'52.535     1' 52.333

WSS:No improvements for Curtain and Parkes

7/5/2005

Yamaha Motor Germany's world supersport riders Kevin Curtain and Broc Parkes
will start tomorrow's Monza race from fifth and 10th place respectively after
failing to improve on their Friday times during today's 45-minute final session.

Conditions remained sunny and warm throughout the day, allowing the Australian
riders to spend the majority of the session working on machine set-up. Both
pitted for fresh tyres in the closing minutes but were unable to take advantage
of their fresh rubber due to heavy traffic, meaning that their fastest times
from Friday (1:53.092 for Curtain and 1:54.218 for Parkes) determined their
final grid position.

Despite being marginally slower than yesterday, both riders were able to set
consistent lap times and know that they can further improve their set-up for
tomorrow's race.

Curtain, third in the overnight standings, was indeed on the front row until
final few minutes of the frantic session. Friday's fastest rider, Frenchman
Sbastien Charpentier (Honda), retained his pole position after improving to a
1:51.730 on the final lap. His team-mate Katsuaki Fujiwara lines up alongside
him, with Italians Gianluca Nannelli (Ducati) and Michel Fabrizio (Honda)
completing the front row.

Kevin Curtain

"I'm riding as hard as I can and I'm able to do consistent 53s, but I just
couldn't break into the 52s. We've got too much weight transferring to the front
under heavy braking and that's causing the back end too move about under
braking. At least we know what the problem is and that's why I'm confident that
we can find a solution for the race. It's a little disappointing to miss out on
the front row. The guys who moved ahead of me were all riding in a group, while
I was unfortunate to get held up a bit at the end."

Broc Parkes

"Last night I felt that we could get onto the front row so it's a little
disappointing to be starting from 10th. Tomorrow we will try some things in the
warm-up. Like Kevin, I am sure that we can improve the set-up and make up some
places in the race."
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