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Haga improves set-up - after title defeat

28 October 2009

Noriyuki Haga finally got close to a comfortable set-up for the Portimao circuit - two days after losing the 2009 World Superbike Championship.

The Ducati Xerox star suffered grip and set-up problems throughout the Portimao race weekend, which contributed to a disastrous race one crash that all but handed Ben Spies the crown.

The Japanese set a best race lap of 1min 43.786sec on Sunday, but some set-up changes allowed him to drop his lap time to a 1min 43.0sec during Tuesday's opening day of post-season testing.

“Today I've tried a harder rear suspension setting and I had a really good feeling with that, then we modified the front setting too but I'm not 100% happy with that yet so we'll continue to work on it tomorrow,” revealed Haga, who ultimately lost out to Spies by just six points.

“[On Wednesday] we'll also try the new [Ohlins] front fork and see how we go. For now I'm fairly happy; times have improved from those recorded over the weekend and I'm confident we can make further improvement tomorrow.”

Team-mate Michel Fabrizio had been faster than Haga throughout the race weekend, and the Italian continued that form on Tuesday with a 1min 42.3sec lap placing him second on the timesheets, behind only Ten Kate Honda's Jonathan Rea (1min 42.156sec).

“We're all very tired after the weekend but it's been a positive day,” said third in the championship Fabrizio. “There are several new things to try, and me and Nori are dividing the work up; there's quite a lot to do.

“Today I tried the new fork with the new clutch and both seem a lot better, we've seen big improvement. For the tyres, we've continued with the only one that worked for us over the weekend. I'm very satisfied, tired but happy,” he added.


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