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Hopkins confident despite slow start in Japan

Hopkins confident despite slow start in Japan

Kawasaki have improvements to make on Saturday after John Hopkins and Anthony West both lapped outside the Friday free practice top ten in the Far East.

The thoughts of John Hopkins and Anthony West as they ended the day twelfth and seventeenth quickest respectively at the A-Style Grand Prix of Japan on Friday…

John Hopkins - twelfth

`There wasn´t much we could do this morning in the wet, especially as the rest of the weekend is predicted to be dry, so we just refined our wet weather set-up. This afternoon the track was still damp in places, but we went out on slick tyres and evaluated all of our different Bridgestone tyre options to find something suitable for the race. We also had a revised specification engine to use and although it´s not that different to what we had before, I can already feel that it´s quite a bit smoother. The main area we are concentrating on is making improvements to our chassis setting as I´m struggling at a few of the hairpin corners to get the bike to turn and exit comfortably. However, we set our fastest time right at the end of the session on a tyre that had already done a lot of laps, which is positive. We´ll make a few changes overnight and we´re not that far off the rest of the field, so I´m feeling confident that we can work our way up the time sheets in qualifying.´

Anthony West - seventeenth

`Conditions at the circuit have been far from ideal today as this morning was wet, but it didn´t really dry out totally for the afternoon session. This inconsistency in weather is not making our job any easier, and we need to make some big improvements to move ourselves further up the standings. We´re struggling to get the machine into the turns, and we´re also suffering with a lack of rear traction on corner exit. It felt slippery out on track, and although we´ve made quite a lot of changes to the chassis set-up, we haven´t really found anything that´s made a big enough difference to improve our lap time significantly. We will continue to work overnight with the data we now have and hopefully we can make more of an impression tomorrow.´

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, A-STYLE GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, John Hopkins, Anthony West, Kawasaki Racing Team

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