Catalunya : Konica Minolta Honda – Day One
Less than a week after their home Grand Prix of Mugello, the KONICA MINOLTA Honda Team has already begun practice for this weekend's Catalan GP at the Montmeló circuit.
Shinya Nakano made steady progress today as he and
the KONICA MINOLTA Honda Team aimed to improve the set-up of their Honda RC212V MotoGP machine around the 2.9mile circuit.
After the Mugello weekend, which was hit by changeable weather, it seems that this weekend's outlook is a much drier and sunnier one, giving Nakano much-needed dry set-up time on his 800cc MotoGP bike.
Gianluca Montiron – Team Manager KONICA MINOLTA Honda
“We made some improvements today to the machine to try and help reduce the chatter that Shinya has been experiencing from the front-end of the Honda machine. Tomorrow will be very important as we will be making some big changes to our number two bike to see if we can find a different solution to make the bike better for Shinya so he can get a good rhythm with the machine and make some fast, consecutive laps. The weather conditions are looking to be much better than both Le Mans and Mugello, so that means we want to take advantage of all the dry time we can to make these radical changes and evaluate them. We want to eliminate the chatter from the front-end of the bike and get the machine turning as Shinya would like, but I think we will also see Shinya making some changes to his riding style to accommodate the new 800cc machine, as many other riders have had to do. We will be working at our maximum to ensure we catch-up with the top group of riders.
Shinya Nakano – Rider, KONICA MINOLTA Honda (53 laps – 1' 44.003” )
“Today we started with our Mugello settings but both during this morning and the early part of the afternoon session we actually had more chattering than before, so it was not so easy to do a good lap time. Later on we tried some different settings including some changes to the front of the bike and we found we had less chattering from the front-end, which was a big improvement. We still have some work to do, as I still want the bike to turn quicker and to get a good lap time I have to push quite hard. We will try some different geometry settings for tomorrow as Giulio, the Team engineer, has some ideas we can try. It looks like we should have plenty of dry time as it's very hot weather here compared to Mugello, perhaps a bit too hot for me!”
Giulio Bernardelle – Technical Director, KONICA MINOLTA Honda
“Today basically we worked to reduce chatter problem that we had in the race at Mugello. The situation was better today, mainly in the afternoon. The issue we now need to look at is that for Shinya it's not possible to make quick, consecutive laps. He can do it for just a few laps only, as if he's doing a timed attack at the end of qualifying, so we need to make some changes tomorrow to help him make 20 fast consecutive laps. Shinya still says he wants the bike to turn quicker, so again we will look at this. Our situation with tyres is quite clear at the moment with the weather being as it is, so we will try to test some different settings to try and improve the bike still further for Shinya.”
Konica Minolta Honda