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Fork tests unsuccessful for Barros

Fork tests unsuccessful for Barros

Fork tests unsuccessful for Barros

Camel Honda rider Alex Barros and his Chief Engineer Ramon Forcada admitted that tests on a new front fork specially designed for the fast corners at Phillip Island had not gone to plan on the final day of tests in Australia on Saturday.

Barros had targeted front traction as they key area for improvements after the first two days of tests in Australia but admitted that the suspension adjustments did not have the desired effect and cost him around 0.5 seconds per lap.

"We worked a lot on the new forks today but we honestly haven't had the results we were hoping for," said Barros. "I'm losing half a second because of it because the rest of the bike is fine.

"There are two positive things to take out of it though – firstly that the race here in Australia is not until October, so we have plenty of time to make progress with the forks, and secondly I am really happy with the work we have done here and in Malaysia with Michelin.

"They are preparing very well for the new season and when we put all the data they have gathered from tests on the compound and construction into practice, I think the results will be excellent.

"We'll be able to verify that in Qatar, although it is not the best circuit because we don't have many references there, and definitely at the IRTA tests in Spain."

"We were expecting a little bit more today from the tests we carried out on the front forks, which are specially designed for this circuit," added Forcada. "However, there is still work to do. We've found a few good things related to the electronic settings and other things that we can discard.

"But that is exactly what tests are for and we're still not even close to the start of the season. At the next tests in Qatar, where the track is dirty and slippery, it will be an ideal chance to work on the electronics of the bike."

Barros team-mate Troy Bayliss continued to work quietly but effectively on the other side of the garage, running up another 85 laps to take his total for the three days to an incredible 257 as he tries to get the better of the RC211V.

"I did the same time on race tyres today as I did yesterday, which is more or less the same as I did at the GP here last October on qualifiers," reflected Bayliss.

"We're still not up there with the fast guys but we're not far off. We've worked a lot over these few days and we will continue to do so at the next tests in Qatar. I can't wait to get there actually – not because I like the track particularly but I just want to improve. In any case I'm leaving here lot happier than Malaysia."

"We're still working hard," added Bayliss' Chief Engineer Santiago Mulero. "Today was more or less the same as yesterday in terms of lap times but the important thing is that Troy is lapping consistently with a good pace.

"In Malaysia we didn't make much progress but here we have, so I think we should continue like this, making gradual progress with every lap without confusing matters."

MotoGP, 2005, Alex Barros

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