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Jan Witteveen on the Aprilia 4 stroke for 2002

Jan Witteveen on the Aprilia 4 stroke for 2002

Currently involved in the fight for the 250cc title and involved in projects for 2002 on two fronts, things are happening at the Aprilia household. Engineer Jan Witteveen explains: ´We´re really happy with our 250cc machine. The results show that it is one of the best, although we´re still working to make it even better. To achieve that we must make progress on suspension and race set-up, and we´re continually making developments with the engine. This is the work we´re currently concentrating on and the objective is to take the World Championship. Harada and Melandri are using identical bikes and we are finding the right set-ups for each rider.´

Witteveen also spoke of the 4 stroke revolution: ´The changes planned for next year represent a great opportunity for motorcycling in general. I´m sure that more people will get involved, not just fans but also sponsors and other business sectors. This will raise interest and that can only be good for the sport. With the 4 stroke we have a very interesting scenario from a technical point of view because the possible configurations of the new engines opens the way to investigation and whoever finds the right way initially will be at a major advantage.´

Aprilia are currently working on two 4 stroke projects: ´We have two projects in progress and we hope to bring them in at the first race of next season. At the moment I can´t really reveal any more details or say how many cylinders they have. With regard to riders we feel we already have a few who are capable of doing a job on the new bikes but we´re also looking outside the current crop for riders who could be suitable for this new project. Technically, all the riders doing well in 250 and 500cc interest us. Obviously we are also considering riders who have already worked with us such as Biaggi, Rossi and Capirossi, but there are non-Italians as well. We can´t forget that the choice of rider also has major commercial implications. Taking into account that the project is in it´s initial phases, we need someone who is not only fast, but who has the experience to help us with set-up problems.´

500cc, 2001

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