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Laverty revels in awesome PBM debut

"This morning Phil [Borley, technical director] could have sent me out just to do laps, but he said, 'There's no point, we're still not ready. It's better we get things right in here and give you something you can actually ride'.

"That approach really paid off this afternoon.

"Unlike yesterday the engine would rev out cleanly and when you shut the throttle, it did shut. It was giving all the right responses. The basics were there and then we started getting everything dialled in.

"We didn't have time to touch the chassis or mechanical set-up and with the electrical work, only the last hour was focussed on performance rather than installation.

“Most of the time we worked on the throttle connection. It was still horrible at the end to be honest - when you touched it, the first ten per cent of the throttle would really make the bike jump off line. But we got everything else working. The actual acceleration we really improved and made quite rideable. We also got the corner entry working better, but we didn't have time to sort any Traction Control or Anti Wheelie.

"By the last hour it felt really good and I'd got into the mid 2m 4s and I'd done a 2m 3.8s on the ART. I think I was just a couple of hours of track time short of matching what I'd done on the ART, which for a brand new bike ridden in anger for the first time at 2pm is unreal.

"Obviously I felt there was more to come from the ART, but we're only a second and a half off the fastest CRT [de Puniet] today. I think that gap is more than achievable with this bike, judging by how much we still have to fine tune it."

Comparing the performance of the frame built by GPMS Technology - previously involved with Kenny Roberts' team, plus the likes of Ten Kate in WSBK - with the Aprilia, Laverty felt corner turn-in was the only relative weakness, and that's before any 'tweaking'.

"It's not far away from the ART chassis," said Laverty. "It stops as well. It doesn't turn with as good an arc. It's a bit lazier and runs a little wider - but then we didn't tweak anything, so that should be achievable with set-up. It seems to chatter less, which was my initial feeling yesterday and was still the same today when I pushed it at a reasonable pace. Overall the chassis is really promising.

"We still have simple things to refine like my position on the bike, but I think the biggest chunk of time will come from the electronics. We've barely touched the surface of the Magneti Marelli ECU. Once we add some traction control and smooth off the throttle there's a lot to be found."

The final official pre-season test will be held at Jerez from March 23-25, before which the PBM team will work on numerous off-track improvements.




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty`s garge, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty`s garage, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty`s CRT, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty`s CRT PBM bike, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty`s CRT PBM bike, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Michael Laverty, Sepang 2 tests, February 2013
Hernandez, Sliding, Malaysian MotoGP 2014

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KwackZX9R

March 02, 2013 4:52 AM

Have to admit I was one of the doubters and was sure that Laverty would have been better off staying in BSB. I'm very pleased to have been proved totally wrong and the team and Michael have done an amazing job. All credit to Paul Bird also for putting his own money into this and making it happen. Good luck for the rest of the year guys and I'll be cheering for you!



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