Gianatsis, Editorial Director
Babes Builders Riders Racing News
World Superbike Championship 2004
Laconi Quickest at Valencia Tests
Troy Corser (Foggy Petronas FP-1) made suspension changes to suit the Valencia circuit and jumped up todayís order to finish fifth on the Thursday timesheets. Leon Haslam (Renegade Ducati 999RS) suffered another fall to add to his injurious day one experience, when he broke a finger on his left hand and badly grazed his calf. He escaped further injury today, and went sixth fastest after 43 laps.
Ten Kate Honda FireBlade rider Chris Vermeulen was sixth fastest, with a Thursday time of 1:37.200 to his credit. Mauro Sanchini continued the development of another 1000cc four-cylinder machine new to SBK competition, as he went eighth fastest on his Bertocchi Kawasaki ZX-10.
Pierfrancesco Chili (PSG-1 Ducati 999RS) suffered another crash to add to his opening day spill, as he tried to eradicate weight transfer problems during his relatively early stage of acquaintance with his 2004 Ducati. He was ninth fastest man on the day, with Chris Walker (Foggy Petronas FP-1) tenth. NCR Ducati rider Garry McCoy was 12th fastest on day two.
In World Supersport Karl Muggeridge (Ten Kate Honda CBR600RR), continued to be fastest rider on show, although he only matched but did not improve his first day time of 1:37.665. Sebastien Charpentier (Klaffi Honda CBR600RR) slotted in second on Thursdayís times, with Ten Kate rider Broc Parkes third and Fabien Foret (Belgarda Yamaha) maintaining a top four pace in the absence of his team-mate Jurgen van den Goorbergh. Kevin Curtain (Yamaha Motor Germany YZFR6) was fifth today. Lorenzo Lanzi (Ducati Fila 749RS) could not get to the pace of the top four cylinder entries, and went 13th fastest. One day remains for all the entrants to improve their times and make final preparations for the first race of the year at Valencia at the end of the month.
Left to right: Ducati president Frederico Minoli, team director Claudio Domenicali, rider Troy Bayliss, team manager Dario Raimondi, and rider Loris Capirossi.
Ducati Marlboro Team: From MotoGP Rookies to Contenders
Ducati Introduces its 2004 MotoGP Team & Bike
February 4th, Bolona, Italy: The results obtained by Ducati in 2003, on their debut in the MotoGP category, amazed the entire world. A podium finish in the first race, pole position in the third, second place in the fifth race and a win after just six races. At the end of the season, the Ducati Marlboro Team had accumulated one win (Capirossi at Barcelona), two second places (Capirossi at Mugello and Phillip Island), six third places (Capirossi at Suzuka, Estoril and Valencia; Bayliss at Jerez, Sachsenring and Brno) and three pole positions (Capirossi at Jerez, Assen and Estoril).
Thanks to these superb results, Ducati finished second in the Constructorsí standings and fourth and sixth in the Ridersí championship with Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss respectively. The results were achieved with a totally new prototype bike, the Desmosedici, which took to the track for the first time just a few months before the start of the championship. The result of a project developed entirely within Ducati Corse, the Desmosedici on numerous occasions achieved the highest top speed on the track (it holds the outright record at Mugello with 332.4 km/h), demonstrating a power output that many people consider to be at the top of the category.
Rookies in the MotoGP championship, Ducati did not waste any time in becoming front-runners. Now in 2004 the Ducati Marlboro Team is expected to be amongst the outright contenders, capable of fighting for the podium in every race with both its riders.
"Last year was a learning season for us," declares Ducati Corse Managing Director Claudio Domenicali. "We had to learn everything about the new bike, which often raced on tracks that we had never seen before. Loris immediately adapted to four-strokes and our working method, and right from the start gave us some great results and real excitement. Troy had to learn numerous circuits and change his riding style to MotoGP power, but adapted quickly and his three podiums are a demonstration of this. The results obtained confirm that the project has solid foundations, on which we must continue to grow, and we feel that we are stronger than one year ago.
Our working group, from Loris and Troy to all the guys in the company, has demonstrated a devotion and professionalism that fills us with pride. All this would not have been possible without the support and the trust of our partners. First of all Marlboro, which believed in us right from the start; Shell Advance, with whom we have a long-standing technical partnership; and Fila and Michelin to name just a few. A warm welcome also to our new partners, including Alice, the prestigious Telecom Italia brand with whom we have also started collaborating on a company telecommunications level. I am sure that the season that is about to get underway will see us contenders in a World Championship that on paper is very evenly balanced and for this reason even more exciting. We are starting the season with the knowledge that we have grown up but aware that the project is still young and in its development phase".
and Troy Bayliss are ready to face up to this new challenge. Last
year both confirmed themselves to be at the top of their game and
capable of giving 100% on every occasion.
More details and photos of the Ducati Desmosedici D16 GP4 HERE
Our official SBK World Superbike FastDates.com Calendar Angels Janelle Perzina, Chandi Mason and Miss Great Britain 2003 Nicki Lane heat things up on Troy Corser's Foggy Petronas Superbike.
Superbike 2004 Provisional Entry List