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Checa happier with improved M1 set-up and new fairing

Checa happier with improved M1 set-up and new fairing

Checa happier with improved M1 set-up and new fairing

Fortuna Yamaha Team rider Carlos Checa made encouraging progress with the M1 at Suzuka today, after a winter dogged by bad weather and mechanical progress. Despite a slow start yesterday when the testing of some new electronic components, the Spaniard was back to his best form in this afternoon´s exciting closing stages as just under a second separated the fastest ten riders. Today he tested a new, more aerodynamic fairing for his M1 for the first time and felt immediate benefits, setting the ninth fastest lap of the day, around 0.7 seconds behind pacesetter Valentino Rossi.

`I felt much more comfortable today,´ said Checa. `We´ve been working as usual on set up these two days. We lost the way a little bit at the Barcelona test two weeks ago but now we have recovered a good feeling, though we still have room to improve the bike.´ With wet weather predicted for this weekend, the Spaniard added: `I will take my conclusions from today and wait and see. For sure it´s going to be a very close race as the lap times at this test have been so quick and so many riders are capable of doing a good race.´

Team Director Davide Brivio was also happy with the progress of both Checa and his young team-mate Marco Melandri, who : `We introduced some new parts at this test, including some electrical components. We had to spend a while to set them up properly which caused us to lose some time. By the end we found a good direction for both Carlos and Marco, which showed as their time improved this afternoon. We still have Friday and Saturday´s qualifying sessions, and then it´s the race that counts. We will see how things really are on Sunday. Let´s hope that rain does not make all the work fruitless.´

MotoGP, 2003, Carlos Checa

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