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Ducati Marlboro men ready to rock at Rio

Ducati Marlboro men ready to rock at Rio

Ducati Marlboro men ready to rock at Rio

Ducati Marlboro Team riders Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss head south to Brazil this week for what promises to be a fascinating Rio Grand Prix. The pair raced the factory´s new Twin Pulse engine for the first time in last Saturday´s Dutch TT and the outing made them optimistic about the future.

´We go to Rio in a very positive mood,´ says Team director Livio Suppo. ´The new engine is a further step forward, so we´re looking forward to the next few races which should be very interesting for us. A special thanks to our technical partners and in particular to Shell Advance for their important contribution´.

At the moment Capirossi and Bayliss each have one bike equipped with the new engine - which uses different firing intervals to produce more rider-friendly horsepower for extra corner-exit traction - and one with the original Four Pulse power-unit. It will be several races at least before they have two of the new engines each, so the team will be doing everything in its power to allow them to ride as much as possible with the Twin Pulse.

´From now on we aim to keep both riders focusing on the Twin Pulse, if at all possible,´ says Technical Director Corrado Cecchinelli. ´That means having enough spare parts and so on and our suppliers are working hard in this period. Rio will be different from 2003 because this year´s race is two months earlier, so conditions will be cooler.

´Rio has a very fast straight but the Twin Pulse makes more or less the same power as the Four Pulse, so it has more or less the same top speed. And as the corner before the straight is crucial the new engine can have more top speed because it gives riders more confidence coming out of corners´. Loris Capirossi can´t wait to get going at Rio after finishing just four seconds outside a podium finish at Assen last weekend in his first race with the Twin Pulse engine.

´The new engine is easier to ride than the Four Pulse, both in the dry and in rain conditions,´ he says. ´Everyone at Ducati and within the team is working very hard. This is our first real step forward since the season started and I think it´s an important step, so now we want to keep moving forward.

´Rio is a very fast track with many fast, open corners and it´s got an unbelievably quick main straight, so it suited our bike last year. But you never know what to expect when you go to Rio because the circuit can be very dirty, which complicates set-up work. Last year the weather was also very changeable - cold one day, hot the next - which makes tyre choice very difficult´.

Troy Bayliss is also looking forward to riding the Twin Pulse Desmosedici GP4 at Jacarepagua.

´I think the new engine is definitely the way to go for the future,´ says the Australian. It makes the bike smoother and more comfortable to ride, so the lap times come without taking risks. The Twin Pulse also makes the bike a little more stable because it´s smoother on the gas. It feels like it´s got more traction and it has got more traction.

´Rio isn´t a bad track. It´s easy enough to learn but like most places it´s getting the last little bit out of it which isn´t so easy. The only thing that most people complained about last year was that there wasn´t much grip, and I guess it´ll be pretty much the same this time´.

MotoGP, 2004, Ducati Marlboro Team

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