Team regular Tom Sykes and test rider Katsuaki Fujiwara lapped at a good pace throughout, with Sykes making great strides in terms of lap times and machine set-up, while Fujiwara tried out some new parts to continue the development curve of the all-new Ninja ZX-10R. Aragon is a new circuit on the 2011 Championship trail, which made this test a doubly useful one for the official team.
Sykes set a personal best lap on the final day, a 1’58.5, which put him just about half a second from the fastest rider. That was a more than encouraging result given that the new Kawasaki still has lots of potential to be unleashed in full WSBK race trim.
Tom’s fellow official Kawasaki WSBK riders for the 2011 season, Chris Vermeulen and Joan Lascorz, were interested spectators at the test, as each continues on their personal trail towards full race fitness.
Tom Sykes: “We were pleased with the test and to be this close to the front at this stage was promising. Overall we had a good understanding of the complete package and we got through quite a few things. Finding a good base setting was the main objective, but at the end we also tried something a bit different on the bike, and again found quite a significant improvement. Overall, I am very pleased with the way things went.”
Paul Risbridger: Team Manager: “We got through everything we wanted to try. Tom and Katsuaki each did good work, with Tom doing more set-up work in readiness for the season, and Katsuaki trying some new general development parts. The lap times were particularly good for Tom, and we recorded him setting a 1’58.5, which is very competitive. The track conditions were reasonably consistent for us and we were really encouraged by the results of this test.”
In the Supersport class, the Kawasaki Provec Motocard.com pairing of Broc Parkes and new signing David Salom pushed on with the task of tailoring their machine settings to their own riding styles, while learning a new circuit.
More winter testing on the Ninja ZX-6R is planned for both Broc and David, as they make their preparations for a full-on assault on the championship in 2011.
Broc Parkes: “I rode on the first and final days of the test, and David rode on the second day. This was a really good opportunity to test at a new circuit that we will be racing on next year. We also wanted to work on a few things that we do not normally get to try during the season. It went pretty well and we did what we needed to do by the end of the test. We were not that concerned about lap times; it was much more important to learn the new track and find good settings.”