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Camel Honda ready for Mugello

Camel Honda ready for Mugello

Camel Honda ready for Mugello

Camel Honda boss Sito Pons and riders Max Biaggi and Makoto Tamada have sounded the Mugello battle cry, with two weeks remaining before the Cinzano Gran Premio d'Italia.

The team stayed on at the Le Mans circuit on Monday to prepare for what is sure to be an intense race, particularly for Biaggi as he tries to wrestle the championship lead from Sete Gibernau in front of his home crowd, and revealed their satisfaction at their groundwork so far.

"It's Max's home race so it is imperative we put on a good show there. It is a race we are all looking forward to and the Le Mans tests allowed us to make the best possible preparations," commented Pons, who was also bouyed by confirmation of a recently extended technical partnership with Repsol.

"We are very pleased to announce the renewal of the partnership, after many years working together in the past with Repsol. It will guarantee the provision of the highest quality racing products, specifically designed for our RC211V, to cover all our technical requirements," added the Spaniard.

Biaggi ran up 89 laps and clocked a best time of 1'33.8 at the French session, making gentle progress with the rear chatter problems which have dogged the majority of Honda riders since the introduction of a new rear shock and swingarm during the winter.

"We did a lot of work, focussing on improving in several areas, in particular to make the bike more stable in certain conditions," explained Biaggi. "We tried a few different solutions with the electronics which have solved a major part of the problems and, above all, given us better traction.

"I also did some endurance testing, working on the consistency of the bike with different front suspension settings and I am satisfied. We know which way we have to go now and the tyre tests with Michelin have also given the results I was hoping for so I am very satisfied."

Makoto Tamada also worked tirelessly as he looked to consolidate a good base setting with his RC211V by getting a head start with his tyre choice for Mugello.

"We worked really hard on our choice of tyres for the Italian Grand Prix," reflected Tamada, who unlike Biaggi uses Bridgestone rubber. "I can say that the feeling with the bike is really good and the base set-up that we have found is satisfactory.

"We had weather conditions which should be very similar to those we will find in Mugello, so Le Mans was the perfect "bench test" to choose the best tyres for the race and that's why I didn't go for a fast time."

MotoGP, 2004

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