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Laconi gets his first taste of MotoGP 4 stroke bike

Laconi gets his first taste of MotoGP 4 stroke bike

After having had to wait a day and a half before sitting on the Aprilia RS3 bike, French rider Regis Laconi finally began the long process of turning the four-stroke MotoGP machine into a Championship contender. Laconi had spent the first day of official Aprilia tests on board the Superbike he raced last year, as a means of refreshment after a three-month break. Fit and raring to go, the Gaul marked his return to MotoGP in impressive fashion, ostentatiously flicking the throttle of the 990cc as he passed the pits completing his first full lap of the Jerez circuit.

The Frenchman, who spent a solitary year in Superbikes, admitted, ´I´m happy at the moment, because I went to Superbike to learn the four-stroke and now I´m back in MotoGP with one of the new four-stroke bikes. I am for sure very pleased to come back, and especially with Aprilia because we have a great bike, and that´s most important for me. It is important now to do lots of good work at this test and make this bike very good for Aprilia.´ Laconi worked alongside veteran Marcellino Lucchi again today, the Italian being the factory´s official tester for both the RS3 and the Superbike.

Outside the MotoGP class, the promising duo of Fonsi Nieto and Toni Elias continued work on the Aprilia 250cc bikes they will compete with this year. Boasting full factory support and under the watchful eye of team manager, Jorge Martinez ´Aspar´, Fonsi was in confident mood, ´There´s lots of things I like [on the new bike] and some I don´t, we´re working really hard, especially on the chassis. I think this year everything is there for us to see on paper, and with hard work, we can win.´

Elsewhere, Roberto Locatelli continued his work in the 250 class, along with fellow Aprilia 250 riders, David Checa, Casey Stoner, Dirk Heidolf and Alex Hoffmann, the latter arriving today for his first meeting with his Racing Factory team. The majority of Aprilia´s 125cc racers were also present on what was a fine sunny day in Southern Spain, which gave all the riders the maximum opportunity to test their machinery.

500cc, 2001

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