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Hofmann satisfied with Rio progress

Hofmann satisfied with Rio progress

Hofmann satisfied with Rio progress

Alex Hofmann revealed his satisfaction after taking further steps forward with development of the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-RR at Rio on Monday. The German rider used the one day test to try out a new fuel injection mapping, aimed at improving throttle control and power delivery out of the corners, as well as minor suspension and chassis changes.

After four hours and 48 laps Hofmann improved his best race time by a tenth of a second, clocking 1'51.42, but rider remains convinced that more power needs to be found from the 990cc, inline four-cylinder motor for the straights.

"We tested some revisions to the engine management system, which gives us a little more torque at the bottom end of the rev range. Together with the revised engine components we were running this weekend, these changes have definitely made an improvement, making it a lot easier to control the power out of the turns.

"But being able to exit the turns faster doesn't make up for the fact that we still need to find some more power for the straights. My times were faster than in the race so, overall, I'm happy with the progress we made.

"Now I'm looking forward to getting back to Europe and starting the preparations for my home Grand Prix at Sachsenring in two weeks time."

On his race on Sunday, when he recovered from a bad start to cross the line in eleventh place, Hofmann commented: "The first three corners were very crowded and everyone passed me on the outside. Then Jeremy McWilliams came past on the straight and, suddenly, I found myself in 19th position.

"Not a good start to a race by any means. Once I got clear of the traffic I was able to chase down John Hopkins and Ruben Xaus and that was a good battle. There are not many passing places here, and I think a top ten finish was possible with a more aggressive first lap."

MotoGP, 2004

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