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Honda HRC Suzuka test. Final day of two day test session.
Weather, fine and sunny; temperature, 24’; track conditions, good.

Honda HRC Riders Better Suzuka Lap Times on Final Day

Repsol Honda factory tam riders Valentino Rossi and Tohru Ukawa ended the two-day HRC Suzuka test session on a high note. Both men slashed over second off their best times of day one.

In bright sunny conditions the two riders spent the entire day improving still further the traction and handling of the 5-cylinder 990cc four-stroke MotoGP machines they will race in the 2002 grands prix.

Fortuna Honda Gresini rider Daijiro Katoh was the fastest man of the day, riding the NSR500 V-4 two-stroke the day with a lap time of 2m 04.44s. The reigning 250cc World Champion is a Suzuka specialists who has won four 250cc grands prix at the 5.859km circuit.

Noriaki Nakata: HRC Team Manager.

“This was the first time we have tested the RCV on the modified Suzuka circuit (changes have been made to the Dunlop cure). Considering this I feel it was a very good test, with a good job done by everybody in the team. We concentrated our efforts on tyre and suspension testing and I’m very pleased with the results we achieved, and the overall development of the RCV.”

Valentino Rossi: RC211V 2m 04.53s. 53 laps.

“Today was a good day for us, testing was much better than yesterday. Here at Suzuka there seems to be little difference between the four-stroke RCV and the NSR two-stroke. But I’m happy with my machine as we found better settings than we tried on the first day, particularly on the suspension. Now I’m looking forward to the final test here, just before the grand prix. I’m sure what we learned here will help improve the RCV still further.”

Tohru Ukawa: RC211V 2m 05.10s. 67 laps.

“I’m happy with the results of the two day test. We worked quite hard on testing many tyres, then tyre and suspension combinations. We did so many laps today and the results were positive. The RCV development is definitely going in the right direction but there is little between the RCV and NSR, the two machines are well balanced here at Suzuka.”

Daijiro Katoh: NSR500 2m 04.40s. 61 laps.

“My NSR500 was really good today. Like everybody else at the test we concentrated on tyres and suspension to get the bike set-up before trying for fast times. My team did a good job for me and I’m very satisfied. I could not have gone faster with the settings we used. I’m still learning about the 500 but its not easy but and we will test here again before the grand prix, I’m ready for that.”

<font color=red>Live it</font color=red> <font color=blue>></font color=blue> <font color=red>Ride it</font color=red> <font color=blue>></font color=blue> <font color=red>Race it</font color=red>
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