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Kawasaki joins new tyre tactic.

Kawasaki began the process of adapting its ZX-RR to run the same specification Bridgestone front tyre as world championship leaders Valentino Rossi and Casey Stoner, during Monday's post-race test at Misano.

Rather than adapting tyres to the characteristics of the bike, the new tactic amongst the chasing Bridgestone teams seems to be to adapt the bike to proven race-winning rubber - a method used to great effect by world championship leader Valentino Rossi, when he first made the switch from Michelin to Bridgestone.

Kawasaki's move follows hot on the heels of a similar change by Suzuki and John Hopkins confirmed that Kawasaki is now the only team running a different specification front tyre to Rossi and Stoner.

"Our focus was mainly on the front-end of the machine, and we have refined our setting from this weekend by changing the way the chassis is set up," began Hopkins, who knocked 0.831secs from his best race lap and finished the test third out of the six riders present.

"We also started work on using a Bridgestone front tyre option that both Valentino [Rossi] and Casey [Stoner] use. This meant we had to alter the bike a lot, but we are now the only team using the old type of tyre, basically because we've not had any chance to test.

"This new specification tyre is definitely the future for us, but unfortunately it can't be in my allocation until we're completely happy with the way the machine handles with it."

As a result, Hopkins spent the last few hours refining the chassis setting of his machine using his current tyre options.

"I'm pleased with the results of today's test, but still have a lot of catching up to do with the upgraded bike," confessed John, who missed the opening day of the San Marino Grand Prix weekend due to a 'rib injury'.

"I'm really excited about Indianapolis, particularly as it's my home round, and we'll be looking to achieve strong results there," he concluded.

Hopkins and team-mate Anthony West finished at the back of the field, in 14th and 13th places respectively, during Sunday's Misano race.



Related Pictures

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West, Hopkins, San Marino MotoGP Race 2008
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Casey Stoner, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Rossi, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Rossi, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Rossi, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Rossi`s crashed Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016

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Brian Battle - Unregistered

September 02, 2008 6:55 PM

I don't think that the Kawasaki is a bad bike. I agree that it seems to be the team. There is something missing there but japanese mechanics are never wrong. They just blame the riders. If you have any brains and you have no confidence in the bike why would you risk life and limb? Hopkins has spent more time on the sidelines than in the races. Maybe not his fault. Come on Kawasaki have a damn good look at yourselves and try and get some continuity and direction in the team.

layton keske

September 02, 2008 4:40 PM

Not sure whether hopkins ever developed the suzuki that well it seemed they were going backwards until paul denning stepped in for garry taylor. I love the greenies but they have got serious issues at the moment i reckon nakano was patching things up with his good riding the last few years.



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