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125: Maxtra not watching lap times.

The new Chinese-backed Maxtra 125GP team says it is happy with its progress despite being left at the tail end of the timesheets during the Valencia test.

"As we said at the Maxtra launch at the GP of China last May, we know we won't be on the leader's pace in year one, but we do have a realistic development programme which we are continuing to pursue," explained team director Garry Taylor.

"At the moment we seem to have a have a strong chassis package with the team based at Harris Performance in England making good progress with new bodywork developed from wind tunnel and aerodynamic tests, plus the very latest suspension from Ohlins.

"On the engine side we have strong low and mid-range power and we are now working on more top end power. Jan Witteveen and his engine team are working on that area and we expect to have new components in time for our next test."

Michael Ranseder was the quickest of the Maxtra riders, albeit in ninth place with a best lap time of 1min 45.0sec - compared with 1min 41.5sec for Aprilia's Lorenzo Savadori.

Nevertheless, Maxtra claimed that the latest engine and chassis combination allowed the Austrian to ride close to the cornering speeds of the established manufacturers and that Ranseder confirmed reliability by completing a race simulation.

Ranseder also helped rookie team-mate Matt Hoyle with suggestions on how to alter his riding style to suite the machine. Hoyle, who lapped 4sec from Savadori to sit tenth and last on the timesheet, also tried the latest specification engine later in the test and was impressed with the progress.

"This was a good shakedown test for the whole team," said Taylor. "This is the first time Michael and Matt have ridden since November last year and it was good to see them both so fit and keen to get on with the development programme.

"It was also the first time out for the complete Maxtra 125 GP team and even the new truck worked out well on its maiden voyage!

"We have a clear direction where we need to make improvements and the whole project is on track for its debut race at Qatar in April."


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