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HONDA RACING NEWS

Honda HRC test - Day 1 - 19 March 2002


On the opening day of the 2 days HRC test at the Suzuka circuit, Japan, the
Repsol Honda Riders and Team technicians spent their time finding optimum
settings for the RC211 V - four stoke Honda.

Team Rider Valentino Rossi and Tohru Ukawa have virtually no Suzuka
experience with the 5 cylinder 990cc RCV, and spent the majority of their
time testing new parts for engine and suspension.

Tomorrow the test continues when the riders will develop new parts in
ready-ness for the final pre-season test next week.

Valentino Rossi: 2m 05.710 s
"At the beginning of the test I had problems with traction and the
suspension settings. But in the afternoon I began to understand better how
to work on the RCV to find the best settings for me."
"Suzuka circuit is one of the most difficult tracks to set up a bike for
racing. For example Suzuka feels much harder to work for me than Sepang.
But after today I'm confident we are working in the right direction."

Tohru Ukawa: 2m 06.310 s
"Although I know the Suzuka circuit well, today we were slow to find good
settings for the RCV. After discussing everything with Valentino we both
understand the direction we should take with this machine."
"At the end of the day I was satisfied with my lap times and with the
settings I found. I am sure that tomorrow we will progress further and I
will set better times."


Team Fortuna Honda Gresini, also attended the Suzuka test. Team rider
Daijiro Katoh, the reigning 250cc Champion, was testing the team NSR 500cc
-four cylinder- two stroke for the first time at the 5.859 km long Japanese
circuit.
Daijiro Katoh set a time of 2m 07.3s



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