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West reflects on successful first day at IMS

West reflects on successful first day at IMS

There were smiles in the Kawasaki garage on Friday as Anthony West topped the timesheets and his colleague John Hopkins finished the day fifth fastest at Indy.

Kawasaki´s Anthony West made the most of his opportunity to set down a marker in the rain on the historic opening day of the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, the renowned wet specialist dominating both sessions as he rode through the water on the new Indianapolis Motor Speedway MotoGP track.

The 27-year-old Aussie quickly got his eye in at the famous American venue lapping a considerable margin ahead of the majority of the MotoGP field, with a best time of the day of 1´53.034 in the morning run.

John Hopkins also made a good start to his `second´ home Grand Prix, concluding the opening the day of activity fifth on the combined timesheets, recording his best lap on the last of his 28 laps in the 90 minute morning outing.

Anthony West - first

`This is a great way to start the weekend, especially after the results we´ve had recently. There´s a lot of water out on the circuit, and it´s a bit strange as there are quite a few changes of surface, but I´ve found my way around here quite easily, so I´m feeling happy. In some ways this track is a bit like those I used to ride on back home in Australia, because many of the circuits there have inconsistent surfaces, and I´ve found it relatively easy to adapt my riding style to suit the changes throughout a lap here. The bike is working well, and although we´ve had a few scary moments, I´m feeling pretty confident for tomorrow.´

John Hopkins - fifth

`This morning conditions started off quite wet, so we concentrated on finding the right lines around the circuit, and it´s quite strange as I really had to alter the way I was riding the bike to suit the changes in surface. I was fairly pleased with our lap time, which we set on a softer compound tyre, before trying something a bit harder during the opening part of the afternoon session. This didn´t really work so well for us, but by the time we went back to the soft tyre, conditions had worsened and there was a lot of standing water out on track. My first impressions of the layout of the circuit are quite good, but it´s difficult to tell with so much rain.´

MotoGP, 2008, RED BULL INDIANAPOLIS GRAND PRIX, Anthony West, John Hopkins, Kawasaki Racing Team

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