New to motogp.com?Register here

Tickets purchase
VideoPass purchase

Heavy testing schedule continues for Aprilia in Valencia

Heavy testing schedule continues for Aprilia in Valencia

Heavy testing schedule continues for Aprilia in Valencia

The factory Aprilia MotoGP team were back out on track today as Colin Edwards and Noriyuki Haga continue to put in the miles to bring the three-cylinder RS Cube machine up to speed. The pair have been testing practically every week recently, and the Italian manufacturer is clearly doing all it can to ensure that the pair transform the bike into being a competitive force next year.

Already having changed to Michelin tyres this winter, Aprilia have also managed to take off some of the bike's bulk which seemed to weigh heavy on their chances of success in this year's MotoGP World Championship. Edwards remarked, ´We've done some good testing, I can't complain, since I first got on the bike we have moved mountains, and we have got a lot better. I don't just think this bike can be top five, I believe it can win, and I wouldn't say it unless I thought that´.

In just his second stint on the bike Haga had a small crash today, but emerged unscathed as he continues his rapid learning curve with the RS Cube. With his bike fitted with a straight pipe in place of the exhaust silencer, it was never hard to pick out Haga around the track, and the modified bike is at least sure to compete with the dynamic Ducati in the decibel stakes next year. $$$

Meanwhile Fonsi Nieto and Toni Elias renewed acquaintances with their 250 Aprilia machines after having not turned a wheel since the last race of the season at the same track. The duo are sure to be fighting it out for the title next year, but are both aware of the new danger of Manuel Poggiali, and the rivalry which will continue with Roberto Rolfo, Sebastian Porto and Randy de Puniet. They did not test any new parts today, but later on in the winter will be focusing on running in a new chassis which the pair both decided was the most necessary advance to be made by the factory.

Dani Pedrosa was back on track for the first time since winning here in November. The young Spaniard will stay with the same Telefonica Movistar junior team next year on board a 125 Honda, but admitted that he would have his work cut out to improve on the third position he remarkably achieved last year. He was joined on track by the 125 Aprilias of Pablo Nieto and Hector Barbera, while his team-mate from this season, Joan Olivé, was unable to make his debut on board the 250 Aprilia he will ride next year, due to the bike having a damaged crankshaft.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2002

Other updates you may be interested in ›