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Roby Rolfo ready to race the RSW

Roby Rolfo ready to race the RSW

Roby Rolfo ready to race the RSW

Roberto Rolfo arrived at the Suzuka Circuit three days earlier than planned so that he could watch the MotoGP riders on track in the final IRTA test session of the preseason. The Italian was keen to see the new generation four-strokes in action ahead of the season opener this weekend, also taking the opportunity to check out the modifications to the 130R curve and the Casio Triangle, and revealed that seeing the action from the grandstands put him in the mood for a new season of racing.

`I love to watch the MotoGP class and I was very impressed with what I saw this weekend,´ said the Italian. `Ducati and Aprilia look like they have closed the gap on Yamaha, but Honda are still way in front. The new corner looks nice from the outside, but I am looking forward to testing it out for myself. It was nice to watch the bikes as a spectator but it has been a frustrating few days waiting for Friday to come around.´

Rolfo took delivery of his all-new Honda RSW last November and has struggled to keep pace with the established fleet of Aprilia machines. However, he underlined his faith in the Japanese factory ahead of the first race of the season. `The Aprilia riders have a new machine but really only the chassis is different so they were working from a base. We have a completely new bike and it takes time to develop. I am comfortable with its dimensions and the chassis is an improvement on the NSR, but at the moment the engine is not. I believe HRC will get it right, I just hope it is sooner rather than later because at the moment we are about one second off our rivals.´ Looking ahead to the weekend, Rolfo says he likes the circuit and, unlike many of his rivals, he will not be writing off his chances if it rains. `Suzuka is very technical, you have to be attentive at all times. There are lots of different corners, with different angles of banking. If you ride well you can go very fast, although I don´t think it depends solely on the rider – you also need plenty of power down the straights, which is where I hope Honda can help us this weekend. If it rains on Friday it is bad news, if it rains on Saturday it is even worse, and if it rains on Sunday it will be a disaster, but I am confident in the wet and I´m sure I would have fun anyway!´

250cc, 2003, SKYY VODKA Grand Prix of Japan

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