Sunday, April 30, 2006

Turkish Grand Prix, Istanbul Park

Race Day, Sunday April 30 2006

DIFFICULT DAY FOR DUCATI MEN
Ducati Team riders Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau endured a challenging race at Istanbul Park this afternoon, finishing sixth and 11th. The result was much less than the team had expected after some promising performances in practice and qualifying. Gibernau had particularly high hopes after placing third in yesterday's wet qualifier and leading this morning's dry warm-up. And he looked in superb form in the early stages of the race, leading from the first turn until the end of lap 11, when tyre concerns began to push him down the order.
 Capirossi, who went into the race leading the World Championship, also had every reason to expect another fine result after qualifying fourth and placing third in morning warm-up. He battled hard throughout, ending the first lap in seventh, then slipping to eighth before fighting back to sixth on the final lap. Capirossi goes into round four in China in two weeks holding second overall, just one point behind Nicky Hayden. The race, run in cool but dry conditions was won by Italian Marco Melandri

LORIS CAPIROSSI, finished 6th, 2nd in World Championship
"I can't say I'm happy with sixth, that's not where we should be. This weekend we were pretty good in the wet but we didn't have enough time to prepare for a dry race, so it didn't go as we had expected. Anyway, we are just one point off the World Championship lead and we scored some useful points for what is a very long and difficult championship. We did well to take home what we could, plus we were also the first Bridgestone team at the finish. We knew this track might be difficult, so we came here with many tyres but we preferred not to risk new tyres for the race, choosing what we thought would be best. Now we go to China, which will be another difficult track, so we will keep working like crazy. We started the season in the best way and now we have to maintain that focus and keep doing our best."

SETE GIBERNAU, finished 11th, 10th in World Championship
"There's not much to say really apart from that we had a rear-tyre problem. I couldn't do anything about it. The bike was working okay and I was feeling comfortable in the lead, but from lap four I started to feel some vibration from the rear. I was thinking about coming into the pits to change the tyre but I decided to keep going. It's a pity, I was feeling confident."

LIVIO SUPPO, Ducati MotoGP project manager
"That wasn't a great day for us. For sure, we got much less than we expected after practice and morning warm-up. We certainly suffered from having no dry track time yesterday because we couldn't do any long runs with race tyres, but that was the same for everyone, of course. We knew that we had to keep our feet on the ground after our great results at Jerez and Qatar and we knew this would be a difficult track for us. We must keep our positive attitude, and at least it was great to see Sete lead for ten laps and Loris fight like a lion to gain the 6th position. We know Bridgestone is working hard, as well as all our technical sponsors, first among them Shell Advance. With their support better days will come soon".

Spies Sets New Pole Record

Ben Spies set a new lap record in qualifying for the Fontana AMA Superbike double-header in California this weekend.

The Yoshimura GSX-R1000-mounted Texan fended off team mate Mat Mladin throughout this afternoon's 40-minute qualifier with a best lap of 1:23.374, which toppled Mladin's 2005 record of 1:23.612.

Said Spies, who was suffering a severe head cold: "It's kind of crazy that we broke the track record because it feels like this is a pretty tight track and everything's happening so slow.

"Yesterday I wouldn't have been able to do that and would have been unable to ride. I made a big change overnight and hopefully we'll keep going, because we're definitely not 100%."

Third Yoshimura team rider Aaron Yates put his GSX-R1000 on the second row one place ahead of Ducati Austin's Ben Bostrom.

Friday Superbike Qualifying:

1. Ben Spies (Yoshimura Suzuki) 1:23.374
2. Mat Mladin (Yoshimura Suzuki) 1:23.613
3. Jake Zemke (Honda) 1:23.957
4. Neil Hodgson (Ducati) 1:24.432
5. Aaron Yates (Yoshimura Suzuki) 1: 24.481
6. Ben Bostrom (Ducati) 1:24.514
7. Miguel Duhamel (Honda) 1:25.212
8. Tommy Hayden (Kawasaki) 1:25.362
9. Jake Holden (Suzuki) 1:25.706
10. Larry Pegram (Honda) 1:26.009


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

BOSTROM AND HODGSON LOOK TO IMPROVE FORTUNES AT FONTANA

Fontana (California) 26 April 2006: California Speedway in Fontana, California is the site of this weekend's AMA Superbike race for Parts Unlimited Ducati's Ben Bostrom and Neil Hodgson. Just one week after the last round at Barber Motorsports Park, the duo hope to put their Ducati 999 Superbikes on the podium during this third race meeting of the year.

Hodgson gave a courageous performance at Fontana last season that will go down as one of the most memorable in the 2003 World Superbike champion's career. Despite an illness that brought his fitness to race into question, Neil showed his mettle as he battled for the win on Saturday, finishing a close third after leading on the last lap. He followed that up with fifth place on Sunday even though his illness forced him into the medical center immediately after the race.

"Fontana is a better track for us than Barber, that's for sure. I had a good race last year. We had a shot at a win and we still were on the podium after I made a slight mistake," said the Englishman. "I guess you could call it the closest thing I have to being a 'home race', because I live in the Los Angeles area when I am here in the States. It's no secret we were disappointed with how things went at Barber but that just makes us more determined to do well at Fontana."

Ben Bostrom was quick at a California Speedway test earlier this year, setting the second fastest lap. He feels the key this weekend is getting a good start to the weekend. "Fontana is not a circuit where you could ride a million laps and think 'Wow, what a great racetrack', but I think we'll be more competitive there. We made progress all weekend at Barber. We just really struggled in the beginning. Even during the red flag on Sunday, we made some changes and improved the bike. Hopefully, I'll be feeling better with my sinus problem and we can get a good start because I want to be winning races."

Qualifying begins on Friday, with 28-lap Superbike races on Saturday and Sunday.

The Circuit: California Speedway 2.36 miles (3.7 kilometers), 21 turns. Oval with permanent road course, with up to 14 degrees of banking in some turns.

Standings (after three races): 1. Ben Spies, Suzuki 107 2. Mat Mladin, Suzuki 99 3. Miguel Duhamel, Honda 88 4. Neil Hodgson, Parts Unlimited Ducati 78 5. Aaron Yates, Suzuki 76 5. Tommy Hayden, Kawasaki 76 7. Ben Bostrom, Parts Unlimited Ducati 71 8. Jason Pridmore, Suzuki 64 9. Jake Zemke, Honda 52 9. Larry Pegram, Honda

Speed TV race listings

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Lites Series, Texas Stadium, Irving, Texas – Saturday, April 29, 6 p.m. (SPEED)

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series, Qwest Field, Seattle, Wash., Sunday, April 30, 12:30 p.m. (CBS)

AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited (Race 1), California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Sunday, April 30, 5 p.m. (SPEED)

AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited (Race 2), California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Sunday, April 30, 6 p.m. (SPEED)

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Lites Series, Texas Stadium, Irving, Texas – Tuesday, May 2, 12 p.m. (SPEED)

Pro Honda Oils Supersport Championship presented by Shoei, California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Tuesday, May 2, 1 p.m. (SPEED)

AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited (Race 1), California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Tuesday, May 2, 3 p.m. (SPEED)

AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited (Race 2), California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Tuesday, May 2, 4 p.m. (SPEED)

Lockhart-Phillips USA Formula Extreme Series, California Speedway, Fontana, Calif., Tuesday, May 2, 5 p.m. (SPEED)

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Lites Series, Texas Stadium, Irving, Texas – Tuesday, May 2, 11 p.m. (SPEED)

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross, Reliant Stadium, Houston, Texas – Wednesday, May 3, 2 p.m. (SPEED)

Amp'd Mobile AMA Supercross Series, Texas Stadium, Irving, Texas – Wednesday, May 3, 3 p.m. (SPEED)


All Times Eastern. All times subject to change.  Check local listings.

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