Wow im suprised no ones posted this yet well anyway here you go:
Michel Fabrizio sets the pace on the first day of Pirelli tyre testing at Kyalami, ahead of Yamaha rookie Ben Spies.
Shinya Nakano makes an impressive showing for series returnees Aprilia, just half a second off the pace; BMW
are around two seconds adrift.
1. Michel Fabrizio
Ducati Xerox 1min 41.204secs 66 laps
2. Ben Spies
Yamaha Italia 1min 41.599secs 46 laps
3. Max Neukirchner
Alstare Suzuki 1min 41.713secs 69 laps
4. Noriyuki Haga
Ducati Xerox1min 41.730secs 31 laps
5. Yukio Kagayama
Alstare Suzuki 1min 41.755secs 39 laps
6. Shinya Nakano
Aprilia 1min 41.846secs 51 laps
7. Max Biaggi
Aprilia 1min 42.446secs 29 laps
8. Ryuichi Kiyonari
Ten Kate Honda 1min 42.744secs 62 laps
9. Troy Corser
BMW 1min 42.975secs 33 laps
10. Ruben Xaus
BMW 1min 43.274secs 41 laps
11. Carlos Checa Ten Kate Honda 1min 43.418secs 10 laps
12. Jonathan Rea Ten Kate Honda 1min 44.496secs 16 laps
13. Tom Sykes Yamaha Italia 1min 46.780 16 laps
drew first blood as the opening day of testing at Kyalami came to a close, the Ducati rider emerging as the quickest rider of a 15-strong field around the South African circuit.
The Italian, who will start his second season with the factory Xerox team in 2009, hit the top of the timesheets in the latter stages of a session that had run interrupted for eight hours.
His time of 1min 41.204secs was already a tenth beneath the lap record held by Colin Edwards
from when the Superbikes last descended on Kyalami.
For some time it looked like his new team-mate Noriyuki Haga
would signal his arrival at the Italian outfit in the most convincing fashion, but after suffering three separate falls through the day, the Japanese rider would emerge fourth best.
Ahead of what is anticipated to be an incredibly close season of racing, three different manufacturers filled the top three positions, while newcomers Aprilia and BMW
showed they will be a force to be reckoned with as they kept up with the pace.
Behind Fabrizio, hotly tipped rookie Ben Spies was an impressive second best on the Yamaha, the American edging out Max Neukirchner on the Suzuki, even if he was some three tenths down on Fabrizio's best.
Neukirchner's team-mate Yukio Kagayama
led the way early on, but while he eventually slipped to fifth, Suzuki will be encouraged with the strong early pace of their K9 GSX-R1000.
Aprilia's Shinya Nakano
was also one of the day's stars as he belied his lack of Superbike knowledge in an excellent sixth place. Given how new the RSV-4 still is, the team will be pleased to see Nakano getting to within half a second of Fabrizio's leading pace.
Team-mate Max Biaggi, who missed much of the day after a series of problems with his flight, was just behind in seventh, albeit six tenths off Nakano, but ahead of Ryuichi Kiyonari
, who led Ten Kate Honda's fairly quiet challenge. Team-mates Carlos Checa
and Jonathan Rea, who collided with Haga early on, were 11th and 12th respectively, but completed just 26 laps between them.
, meanwhile, were a modest ninth and tenth quickest as they completed their first day of group testing. While the team were still 1.7secs off the pace with Troy Corser
, it remains an encouraging first effort for the Superbike novices.
Elsewhere, Kenan Sofuoglu
and Andrew Pitt were on track for Ten Kate's Supersport team, the Turk edging the recently crowned champion by two thousandths of a second. An ailing Tom Sykes was 15th and slowest after ending his day after just 16 laps through illness.
some spies updates :
Boy, sure is a good thing that Suzuki's MotoGP team passed on that pesky Ben Spies and his pain in the butt mom.
News is slowly filtering out of the Kyalami World Superbike test that American Ben Spies, who had never seen Kyalami nor could he find it on a map before last week I'll bet, is second fastest after day one of the multi-day test. Ducati Nori Haga is fastest but suffered two falls. Spies' teammate, Tom Sykes, is down with a virus.
Times and more news in a bit.
Moments ago, Soup caught a few minutes with Ben Spies, who called in from the WSBK tests in Kyalami, South Africa.
When asked if he was surprised by his competitiveness, given how early the 2009 R1 is in its development cycle, Spies replied: "Honestly, if we were a second or a second and a half slower, I'd still be pretty happy. If the development was a 4 step program, I'd say we were clearly in the 1st step. This bike is going to change a lot before the green light goes off in Phillip Island. We haven't messed around with the chassis too much, I'm just getting used to it. I was fastest about half the day. I did like 85 laps or something. "
Asked how he was getting along with new teammate Tom Sykes, Spies said: "Things are really different with Tom, we eat all our meals together, we're spending a lot of time together. He's sick today so he didn't get to ride much, but for sure, it's different than what I'm used to. He's a really good guy and we're working together to make the bike the best it can be. "
Jet lag doesn't seem to have affected Ben too much. "I felt it this afternoon a bit, but I'm sleeping good, thankfully. The time difference is about 10 hours or something from America, so the Europeans might be feeling it a little less."
Spies is running WSBK Pirellis in competitive conditions for the first time in this test. "Honestly I was surprised at how good the Pirellis felt, the front end grip was awesome. It was like 90 degrees here, and they stuck really good. I've got no complaints at all about the tires."
Spies dismissed any praise over his impressive performance today. "I'm just going out there and doing my thing, doing what I do. The field is very deep here, there are a few guys that could win an AMA Superbike race for sure. I'm glad we're where we are at, but I'm not thinking about it too much. I've got a lot of work to do."
So, new team, new circuit, new bike, new tires, slight jet lag, and a soft motor spec = 2nd place for Spies.