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Montiron reviews season start

 Montiron reviews season start

Montiron reviews season start

An exclusive interview with Luca Montiron, manager of Konica Minolta Honda.

Was the decision to remain at the Istanbul circuit for a test day a good one? Stopping at the Istanbul Park Circuit to test has been very important. The Konica Minolta Team and Makoto Tamada have had the possibility to carefully analyse the new material that Michelin put at our disposal.

We have obtained positive feedback on lap times, improving Makoto's race lap time of 1,6". This result will be important to cheer our rider up.

Are results so far below expectations?

For sure the start of our season has been below expectations, but we cannot allow this to bring our project into question. I believe in what we are doing and we will not lose sight of our target; on the contrary, it now time to demonstrate how determined we are in reaching it.

Has the relationship with Makoto Tamada changed over the beginning of this season?

I've been working with Makoto for 4 years, the relationship with him has always been and continues to be very open and frank. This allows me to address to him in a very steady and hard-edged way without the risk that this could be interpreted as an exacerbation of our relationship. On the contrary, knowing him very well, I know that this type of behaviour can only help him, encouraging and inciting him to rediscover the balance which allowed us to celebrate in the past.

So, you still have faith in Makoto?

The whole team is united in supporting our rider after a winter of hard work. We are strongly determined to get out of this situation, which had never occurred before during our three previous working years together.

We hope that the group spirit on which our team is based will provide Makoto with the necessary support to quickly forget this bad moment."

What are your expectations for the future?

In Turkey, Makoto had an immediately better feeling in respect to Qatar. His reactions on Friday and Monday lead us to think that the situation is getting better. With the support of a technical partner like Michelin, we are confident of returning to the level of performance that we are used to.

What do you think about the young riders coming into MotoGP ?

With the arrival of new talents from the lower categories the Championship level has definitely increased, and results prove that the 125 and 250 categories are good training areas before making the leap up to MotoGP.

A private team can't always invest to try to make the riders improve, because present budgets don't permit this strategy. A title sponsor is not willing to invest in a rider who's guaranteed to be competitive.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2006, GRAND PRIX OF TURKEY

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