James Ellison says there is 'real potential' in the Kawasaki ZX-10R as he enjoyed his first test with the Lloyds British GBmoto team in Cartagena.
The former MotoGP rider, who finished fourth overall in 2013 with Milwaukee Yamaha, joins the GBmoto squad for the 2014 BSB season with a view to mounting a challenge to get the team into the Title Showdown for the first time.
As well as signing a multiple race winner in Ellison, GBmoto have switched to Kawasaki machinery in 2014, with the experienced racer declaring his satisfaction with the bike.
“I was pleasantly surprised after riding the ZX-10R for the first time, I naturally had some nerves in the morning but could tell straight away that the bike has real potential. It's very nimble and felt stronger on the brakes, which is what we need for the UK circuits, but it's important not to get carried away this early on.
“This was our very first run out on the bikes so we had a lot of set-up work to do and weren't really pushing for lap times as I was shaking off some of the winter rust and getting used to the Kawasaki. That said, I still managed to go faster than I did last year and post my fastest lap around Cartagena so I'm looking forward to seeing how we get on at Almeria and the UK tests.”
Team-mate Chris Walker, who comes to GBmoto having spent recent seasons riding Kawasaki machinery, was also pleased with his first impressions of the team having posted his best ever lap of Cartagena.
“It was mega to get back out on a Superbike after such a long winter. It was the first time I got to truly work with the team and we all instantly gelled, which is one of the most important things about joining a new team. Although I've been riding Kawasaki's for the last few years, the GBmoto bike is completely different to what I've been used to. It's got bags of potential and the fact I was able to lap over a second faster than I did this time last year bodes well.
“I spent the majority of the test getting used to using the new Öhlins suspension, while James worked on electronics and we're now heading to Almeria where we'll be able to keep working on the set-up. I'm feeling really positive and am sure if we keep going like we are then we'll be in a strong position come Brands Hatch.”