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Harald Eckl confident with strengthened crew

Harald Eckl confident with strengthened crew

Harald Eckl confident with strengthened crew

Now set for their third full campaign in the MotoGP class, the Kawasaki Racing Team is beginning a crucial year as they try to catch up with the mighty Yamaha and Honda factory efforts.

To push forward the development of the Ninja ZX-RR, the Japanese manufacturer opted for a new engine philosophy, but also strengthened its crew over the winter with the recruitments of revered engineer Ichiro Yoda and seasoned chief mechanic Fiorenzo Fanali.

Team manager Harald Eckl, at the helm of the project since 2002 after a successful stint on the Superbike/Supersport scene with Kawasaki, commented on these additions: "I am delighted to welcome such professional people into our team, their track record and experience makes me very confident for the future," said Eckl, a former GP rider.

"Yoda-san is one of the most respected engineers in the MotoGP paddock and I'm confident that he will make a significant contribution to our development programme, working with the engineers and riders to take us to the next step."

The German is also confident about the role that Fiorenzo Fanali will play in his team. The Italian worked alongside MotoGP legends such as Giacomo Agostini, Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson and Randy Mamola, and more recently, Max Biaggi and Marco Melandri at Yamaha.

"Fiorenzo Fanali will work with Shinya Nakano this year and I think that will be a very positive experience for Shinya. Fiorenzo is very experienced and one of the old school of engineers and crew chiefs, with a good understanding of how to get the best from his rider."

"In this way I would compare him to Yamaha's Jerry Burgess, because he works on the practical as well as the theoretical side, and he knows that a rider's brain is not a computer. Riders are still mainly guided by feeling and this is where Fiorenzo will be of assistance to Shinya."

Eckl also stressed the importance of Christophe Bourguignon as Alex Hofmann's chief mechanic.
"And it is important to note that Christophe Bourguignon will continue his excellent work with Alex Hofmann. They formed a strong team in 2004 and Christophe is highly respected in the sport and was integral to our success last season."

"I think overall we will have a very strong support crew in the pit box on race weekends," concluded Eckl.

MotoGP, 2005

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