Press Release
(2005 FIM Superbike World Championship)
YRC News
WSB : Pitt third in first qualifying

Round: 12 - France
Circuit: MagnyCours
Date: 7 October 2005
Temp: 29ēC
Weather: Sunny

Andrew Pitt had a positive start to Sunday's final round of the Superbike World
Championship by taking his Yamaha Motor Italia YZF-R1 to third place in today's
opening qualifying session.

The Australian spent the majority of the day working on set-up for Sunday's
races, but put on a sticky qualifying tyre to post a best time of 1:41.169,
which he hopes will be good enough to put him into tomorrow's grid-deciding
superpole session for the top 16 riders after Saturday morning's final
qualifying session.

Team-mate Noriyuki Haga had a typical Friday session, testing many different
machine settings rather than going for an ultimate fast lap. The Japanese rider
had a rare fall during the morning practice session, the result of pushing too
hard on an unfamiliar front tyre, but came back to end the day 12th with a time
of 1:41.681 despite still not being happy with the balance of his machine.

Magny Cours is a familiar circuit for many Yamaha riders, not least the Yamaha
Motor France team. Few riders know their way around the circuit as Sebastien
Gimbert, who competed in the Bol d'or 24-hour endurance race just a few weeks
ago. He ended the day 14th, one place ahead of team-mate Norick Abe - making his
first race visit to the circuit but familiar with the layout from previous
testing. David Checa, a member of Gimbert's Yamaha GMT94 endurance team, is
entered as a wild card and ended the day seventh fastest.

In one of the closest qualifying sessions of the year the top 20 riders were
covered by less than two seconds. Fastest man today was Yukio Kagayama (Suzuki),
who set the fastest two-wheeled lap ever of the Magny Cours circuit with a
1:40.512. Karl Muggeridge (Honda), was second.

Andrew Pitt (Yamaha Motor Italia)

"We made some changes to the bike after the morning session and it made a real
improvement. We're able to do 1:41.9s on the race tyre but I got a good lap in
there at the end and I think it should get me in to superpole no matter what
happens tomorrow. Hopefully we can make a few little changes to improve it some
more for superpole and the race."

Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia)

"The feeling is still not quite right but we still have a lot of things to try
for tomorrow and I think that we will find the solution. We lost quite a bit of
time because we spent 15 minutes changing things on the bike and then ended a
little early because we knew what we have to change for tomorrow. I am not at
all worried to be 12th. The race does not start until superpole, so until then
we should use the time to get the feeling with the bike correct.

Sebastien Gimbert (Yamaha Motor France)

"Of all the tracks in the championship this is the one I know best - I cannot
think how many laps I have done here in endurance. We are able to run good
consistent laps but were unable to go faster at the end of the session and
slipped back a bit. I'm looking for an improvement tomorrow."

Norick Abe (Yamaha Motor France)

"I'm happy because already I am faster than when I tested here in the summer,
although the temperature is different and that means a change in the grip
levels. Normally I am faster than my team-mate, but today Sebastien is one place
ahead of me. He knows this track very well though, and I am sure we can both
improve tomorrow."

Massimo Meregalli (Team Coordinator - Yamaha Motor Italia)

"Quite a good day today. Andrew is looking strong here, as he was when he rode
the supersport bike for us last year. Noriyuki will make some changes this
evening although this is the way he always works: spending Friday getting the
bike how he likes it and Saturday and Sunday going fast!"

Round: 12 - France

Circuit: MagnyCours
Circuit Length: 4411m
Lap Record: 1' 41.219 (Neil Hodgson, 2003)
Fastest Lap Ever: 1' 40.754 (Neil Hodgson, 2003)
Date: 7 October 2005
Temp: 29ēC

Session 1 :

Pos.Rider           Manufacturer  Nat.  1st Qualifying
 1  Y. Kagayama     Suzuki        JPN   1'40.512
 2  K. Muggeridge   Honda         AUS   1'40.854
 3  A. Pitt         Yamaha        AUS   1'41.169
 4  L. Lanzi        Ducati        ITA   1'41.184
 5  T. Corser       Suzuki        AUS   1'41.224
 6  S. Martin       Petronas      AUS   1'41.251
 7  D. Checa        Yamaha        ESP   1'41.437
 8  C. Vermeulen    Honda         AUS   1'41.473
 9  C. Walker       Kawasaki      GBR   1'41.520
10  G. Bussei       Kawasaki      ITA   1'41.597
11  B. Bostrom      Honda         USA   1'41.615
12  N. Haga         Yamaha        JPN   1'41.681
13  M. Neukirchner  Honda         GER   1'41.695
14  S. Gimbert      Yamaha        FRA   1'41.760
15  N. Abe          Yamaha        JPN   1'41.812
16  F. Nieto        Kawasaki      ESP   1'41.929
21  J. Da Costa     Yamaha        FRA   1'42.615
23  G. Vizziello    Yamaha        ITA   1'43.212
26  M. Nickmans     Yamaha        BEL   1'44.437

Curtain and Parkes on the pace in Magny cours


Yamaha Motor Germany's Kevin Curtain overcame a low speed fall to record the
second fastest time of the opening day at Magny Cours, with his team-mate Broc
Parkes also in a provisional front row grid position, having set the fourth
quickest overall time.

The usual close competition in supersport saw the top three riders covered by
only 0.198 seconds, at a track which exhibited two different characters and
varying levels of grip. Misty morning conditions gave way to slightly improved
afternoon weather, but the track surface proved to have better grip
characteristics in the earlier, and untimed, session. Curtain was fastest man in
the unofficial opening exchanges, Parkes fourth.

Kevin Curtain

"Things feel really good and the conditions were even better this morning than
the afternoon, when the heat started to come out a little bit. We are testing a
new Pirelli tyre here as well, so we spent some time trying that out. There were
a lot of crashes in the afternoon session, one rider even fell twice! We tried
something different with the suspension in the timed session but it didn't suit
the bike, and I had a little crash. It was just a small front ender. I ran back
to the pits, jumped on the spare bike and got myself up to second position."

Broc Parkes

"Things are really good today and I went faster than my Friday time from last
year. You can't ask for too much more than that. I did almost the whole session
on one tyre and only changed it near the end, when I went to set a faster lap
time. I went out and in the first two section times I was fastest then hit some
traffic. So my time would have been better with a clear track. The main thing is
we are competitive and can go even faster."