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Early promise for Ducati at Rio

Early promise for Ducati at Rio

Early promise for Ducati at Rio

The Ducati Marlboro Team ended the first day of qualifying for the Rio Grand Prix in optimistic mood after Loris Capirossi took fifth place whilst Troy Bayliss took 13th after a minor mistake cost him valuable time on his fastest lap.

Capirossi and his crew were understandably delighted with his pace. For the first time the Italian has both his Ducati Marlboro Team Desmosedici GP4s equipped with the factory's new Twin Pulse engine which uses different firing intervals for more rider-friendly power delivery. For the time being Bayliss continues with one Twin Pulse motor and one Four Pulse.

"The more the riders ride the Twin Pulse, the more they like it," said Ducati Marlboro Team director Livio Suppo. "This is only our second race with the new engine, so we're all still getting used to it, which makes us optimistic for the future. Loris did a great job today, both on race tyres and qualifiers, as did Troy who was good with race tires but missed something in the qualifying lap."

"I'm very happy, not just because I'm fifth but because I'm having fun on the bike and because I can feel the results starting to come," grinned Capirossi, who would set his best grid of the season if he can hold his position tomorrow.

"The bike is definitely improving, so a big thank you to everyone at Ducati who has worked so hard to give me two Twin Pulse motors. I did a lot of laps on race tyres today. I'm happy with the times, though I feel I can go quicker tomorrow after we've made some chassis adjustments."

Troy Bayliss was also in confident mood after clocking his fastest lap with his sole Twin Pulse motor. "I feel really good on the bike, even if 13th place doesn't look that spectacular," said Bayliss. "I made a bit of a mistake on my fastest lap at the end of the session - I went into turn one in fourth gear, not third, and though I had another go the next lap, my qualifying tyre was finished by then.

"I've been going okay but it's been a little difficult riding the two different engines. I only started using the Twin Pulse halfway through the session because we want to save parts."

MotoGP, 2004

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