WSB : Haga seventh in Silverstone
Round: 5 - United Kingdom
Date: 27 May 2005
Yamaha Motor Italia's Noriyuki Haga put in one of his best qualifying
performances as an R1 rider to take seventh place on the provisional grid for
Sunday's fifth round of the Superbike World Championship at Silverstone.
The Japanese ace was consistently in the top 10 during both the day's practice
sessions in his first outing around the short International configuration
circuit at Silverstone, a layout Haga described as "good, quite funny." In his
fifth race with the YZF-R1, Haga admitted he is starting to get the machine set
up more to his liking and with a good base setting already found in today's two
one-hour session, the Yamaha Motor Italia team will try a few small suspension
modifications tomorrow in a bid to further improve the package.
Haga's team-mate Andrew Pitt meanwhile had a day of woe in Silverstone, ending
the first qualifying session in an uncharacteristically low 23rd place after
failing to find a good set-up on his R1. The Australian lacked confidence in his
machine and was unable to push hard into the many slow and bumpy corners at the
British circuit, ending the day two seconds off pole position with a best of
Superbike rookie Massimo Roccoli headed the gaggle of Yamaha riders occupying
places 13 to 17. The Rimini youngster, standing in for the injured Gianluca
Vizziello, was one of the revelations of the day as he held of a number of
experienced R1 riders, including Yamaha Motor France's Sebastien Gimbert and
Norick Abe - 15th and 17th respectively on their Silverstone debuts.
Ducati's Regis Laconi was the fastest man in today's first session with a lap
time of 1:27.578, just marginally quicker than his team-mate James Toseland.
Suzuki riders Troy Corser and Yukio Kagayama round out the provisional front row.
Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia)
"Not so bad, probably the best all year actually. The feeling with the bike is
quite good and I still have some more settings to test tomorrow which we hope
will make the bike more easy to ride. Today I was able to get into the 1:28s but
I felt that I was pushing it quite hard. If the changes we make work then we
should have a good set-up for the race."
Andrew Pitt (Yamaha Motor Italia)
"It's been really tough today as I've just not been able to get the bike set up
how I want it. The problem is that I cannot get the bike stable under braking
and around this short track here there are so many corners where this is
crucial. I have to admit that I'm not a big fan of the short circuit - I much
preferred to ride the Grand Prix circuit - but we just have to get on with it.
We've been in this position before. I was 24th on the first day in Valencia and
improved to the second row after superpole, so we've got to keep focused to work
on a solution for tomorrow."
Massimo Meregalli (Yamaha Motor Italia Team Coordinator)
"I'm happy with Nori's performances today, especially on race tyres where the
gap very close. He is also happy and I think that we can make some more
improvements tomorrow. For Andrew it is a tough day and it looks like a lot of
the changes we made were perhaps not the right ones. But we have had a meeting
to discuss the best way forward and now we must sleep on things and hope that we
are going in the correct direction. Andrew has proved before how mentally strong
he is and I am sure he will have a positive attitude tomorrow."
Sebastien Gimbert (Yamaha Motor France)
"It's my first visit to Silverstone so I am learning the track and find a good
set-up. We can make more progress and push a little harder tomorrow. The first
target is to qualify for superpole so tomorrow we will see what happens."
Norick Abe (Yamaha Motor France)
"Again this is a new circuit for me to learn and my position for today is
similar to the first day in Monza. For sure we can make progress and we must
make sure that we move in the right directions with the changes. If we do then I
am confident we can improve and make the superpole."
Round: 5 - United Kingdom
Circuit Length: 3619m
Lap Record: 1' 53.629 (Gregorio Lavilla, 2003)
Fastest Lap Ever: 1' 52.875 (Neil Hodgson, 2003)
Date: 27 May 2005
Session 1 :
Pos.Rider Manufacturer Nat. 1st Qualifying
1 R. Laconi Ducati FRA 1'27.578
2 J. Toseland Ducati GBR 1'27.627
3 T. Corser Suzuki AUS 1'27.696
4 Y. Kagayama Suzuki JPN 1'27.832
5 P. Chili Honda ITA 1'28.145
6 K. Muggeridge Honda AUS 1'28.189
7 N. Haga Yamaha JPN 1'28.240
8 C. Vermeulen Honda AUS 1'28.310
9 B. Bostrom Honda USA 1'28.366
10 C. Walker Kawasaki GBR 1'28.373
11 G. McCoy Petronas AUS 1'28.449
12 G. Bussei Kawasaki ITA 1'28.503
13 M. Roccoli Yamaha ITA 1'28.625
14 J. Cardoso Yamaha ESP 1'28.650
15 S. Gimbert Yamaha FRA 1'28.731
16 L. Alfonsi Yamaha ITA 1'28.965
17 N. Abe Yamaha JPN 1'28.986
23 A. Pitt Yamaha AUS 1'29.638
26 M. Praia Yamaha POR 1'30.315
Kevin and Broc pleased with Silverstone performances
Kevin Curtain set the third fastest time in today's opening qualifying session
for Sunday's Supersport World Championship round at the Silverstone circuit in
the United Kingdom.
The Yamaha Motor Germany rider had been the early pacesetter and looked likely
to hold the provisional pole position when a heavy shower less than half way
through the session saw the riders retreat to the garages. But the returning
sunshine soon after ensured the surface dried quickly and allowed most riders to
set quicker times than before the rain, including championship leader Sebastien
Charpentier (Honda) and his team-mate Katsuaki Fujiwara, who pipped Curtain to
the top slot in the dying moments of the session.
Curtain's team-mate Broc Parkes ended the day just off the front row, in fifth
place, after setting his best time on his 12th and final lap despite heavy
traffic. Both riders declared themselves happy with their YZF-R6s, having made
great strides with suspension settings in the last two rounds. Final qualifying
takes place tomorrow afternoon.
"The short circuit is really suiting us. Without the long straights we're able
to run short gearing and this is really helping us get out of the slow corners.
Charpentier and Fujiwara obviously really went for it at the end and looking at
the timesheets I'm encouraged to see that I can do consistent laps in the 1:30
second bracket, and this is what counts for the race."
"I'm really pleased with how it went today. We've found some good settings and
the bike is working well around here. I'm confident that I can go quite a bit
faster as the track was still quite damp when I set my best lap and the traffic
around this short track was unreal."