MotoGP heads to the Southern Hemisphere this week for the 16th round of the world championship at Phillip Island. After a hugely uplifting performance last time out at Motegi, the Kawasaki Racing Team are looking forward to continuing their success following Randy de Puniet's excellent second place, his first premier class podium, and Anthony West's hard-fought seventh.
Riding the Kawasaki ZX-RR, powered by the latest incarnation of the 800cc, four-stroke engine, and running the Bridgestone tyres that have dominated the series so far this year, de Puniet is looking stronger than ever.
With the Ninja repeatedly showing itself to be one of the fastest bikes on the track, and the number 14 pilot regularly proving to be one of the fastest men, the swooping, high speed turns of the Australian circuit represent an alluring challenge and the 26-year-old Frenchman's aiming high.
Lorenzo Lanzi and Troy Bayliss will line up on the second row of the grid for the Ducati Xerox Team after a relatively below-par Superpole qualifying session at the Magny-Cours circuit. James Toseland (Honda) took the pole ahead of Max Neukirchner (Suzuki), with the other two title contenders Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha) and Max Biaggi (Suzuki) in fourth and sixth respectively.
Quickest after the first two qualifying sessions, the 38 year-old Australian put together his fastest lap of the weekend in Superpole, but his time of 1m39.174s was only good enough for the second row. "I'm pretty disappointed with my lap to say the least" declared Troy. "That was as fast as I've ever gone around here, but I honestly thought I was going to do quite a bit better. It wasn't just one thing, the whole lap was missing just a little bit; I didn't flow with the bike and it didn't come together. I'm a bit disappointed to start on row 2, but the bike's been working quite good and I'm looking forward to a nice sunny day and some good racing.
Team Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra stand in rider Max Neukirchner has taken second place on the grid for tomorrow's final-round World Superbike Championship round at Magny Cours in France.
The young German, covering for injured Yukio Kagayama, recorded a time of 1'38.501, a whisker behind pole-setter James Toseland (1'38.501).
Despite only riding the Alstare Suzuki GSX-R1000 K7 for the first time yesterday, he immediately got on terms with the bike and was a force to be reckoned with throughout practice and qualifying.
In this afternoon's 16-rider shoot-out he blasted round the 4.411 kilometre track in 1:38.524 and was only deprived of Superpole by a determined James Toseland (Honda). At the end, the margin between him and Toseland was only 0.023, so he will start alongside the series leader in tomorrow's pair of 23-lap races.
The Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team has its name on two spaces on the front row of the grid for the final race of the season tomorrow, with Corser in third and Haga in fourth.
Haga set a blistering pace during this morning's second qualifying session, becoming the first rider of the session to put in a 1'39 lap time and go top. He stayed at the top of the board until the final minute when Bayliss took 0.095 seconds off his time, pushing Haga to second place for Superpole. Corser used the session to work on his set-up and joined the 1'39 club five minutes from the end to go fifth fastest.
Corser was the first man out of the box for the team and managed a good lap to go second in the rankings behind Toseland, although he was later knocked into third by Neukirchner who was 0.1 seconds in front.
Kawasaki KSR-110 Big Performance Delivered by a Fun-Sized bike. The design and the engine are both designed to be friendly to use for beginners and novices drivers. while also offering a roomy layout and enough performance to suit more-advanced riders.
Power for the Kawasaki KSR-110 is loaded with a user-friendly 111cc air-cooled, SOHC two-valve, four-stroke single cylinder engine which produces an output of 8.4 horsepowers. Considering economics the Kawasaki KSR-110 drives about 55 kilometer on 1 liter fuel.
The engine's tractable power is delivered to the rear wheel via an easy-shifting, semi-automatic 4-speed transmission, complete with semi-automatic clutch. Newer riders gain confidence quickly by focusing on the basics of steering and balance instead of throttle/clutch coordination.
Team Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra rider Max Biaggi and stand-in Max Neukirchner endured difficult conditions in the first qualifying session at Magny-Cours this afternoon at the final round of the World Superbike Championship.
Just as the session began, light rain began to fall, making the 4.411 kilometre circuit very slippery in places. Although the rain soon stopped, most riders stayed in the garages and waited for the track to dry out before trying to set a fast qualifying time.
Neukirchner, deputising for injured Yukio Kagayama, managed to go out and complete a lap in 1:42.397 to end the day 13th quickest overall, whilst Max Biaggi set a lap of 1:42.620 and finished 14th overall. Neither rider wanted to take any risks, on a track that was still damp in places, so took things steadily instead.
Following an afternoon of mixed weather, the Yamaha Motor Italia WSB Team has finished day one of qualifying with Haga and Corser in provisional third and fifth positions respectively.
Both riders started the day in the top six during this morning's free practice but it was the weather that changed everyone's plans when the qualifying session was declared wet after a sudden rain shower at the start. Everyone went out initially but came in after only one out lap as the back of the circuit was wet. With Sunday's dry forecast making wet laps pointless, there was then no further on-track activity until 30 minutes into the session when the sun had dried the tarmac sufficiently.
The Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom offers cleans styling and a slender 21" front wheel, the one with the attitude in the Kawasaki Vulcan 900 family.
A motorcycle should make its owner proud, whether cruising through town or simply parked at one of the many motorcycling hangouts throughout the country. With the Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom, riders get the seamless blend of comfort, big bike feel, and customized appearance.
The Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom is the crown jewel in Kawasaki's mid-size cruiser family. This chrome-laden cruiser is more than just good looking. Like its 903cc siblings, the Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Custom's big-bike feel is generated by a power-plant that pulls cleanly around town and boasts exceptional roll-on acceleration that matches the get-up-and-go of much larger motorcycles.
Before we start, we need to be clear that the Yamaha Fino will never be one of the top choice for speed geeks. We found after our installment of the engine modification that the Yamaha Fino becomes hard to drive at higher speeds. Some moments the Yamaha Fino was outright dangerous to handle. After we examined the cylinder of the Yamaha Fino we came-up with the idea to do a bore-up to 63mm, the stock bore of the Yamaha Fino is 55mm. Changing the bore from 55mm to 63mm will change the Yamaha Fino from a 114cc to a 189cc motorcycle.
After contacting some of our sources for accessories we found a manufacturer who produces a complete set, which includes a 63mm Ceramic Laminated cylinder, a high performance 4-valve cylinder head (the Fino comes standard with only 2-valve head), 63mm Piston, high performance racing camshaft and the materials to make this all fit and assemble.