Sofuoglu up to speed at Jerez test

Reigning champion Kenan Sofuoglu shows a change of team won't lessen his status as a title favourite ahead of the 2013 World Supersport Championship.
Kenan Sofuoglu has sent out a warning signal to his World Supersport Championship rivals after wasting little time getting acquainted with his new Mahi Kawasaki team during testing at Jerez.

The reigning champion, who secured his third career title during his first season with Kawasaki in 2012, remains with the manufacturer this year but switches to the new factory-backed, Indian-funded Mahi Racing team.

Having made his Mahi debut during post-season testing towards the end of 2012, Sofuoglu continued to progress at Jerez as he ended the two-day test with the fastest lap time, marginally ahead of Yakhnich Yamaha's Sam Lowes and newcomer Michael van der Mark on the Pata Honda.

“I am leaving here very pleased because at the test in November I had some problems in the dry with the feel on the front, because of my riding style. Now I am satisfied because they found some suspension improvements for me and they will now go and build some new material to give me a wider range of adjustments to work with.

“I am sure they will make another improvement so I am happy with the team, the bike and the package. I really wanted to come here to test again before we went to Phillip Island so I could see if the other teams were ready or not, so I am happy that the test went well and that my team will be ready to fight in the first race.”

“[During the wet] I am happy that we found good improvements in our wet set-up. I did not have a good feeling until late in those conditions. By the end of the day we had made a very big improvement. We changed a lot, so I am very happy.”

Elsewhere in the Kawasaki camp, Sofuoglu Mahi's team-mate Fabien Foret was fifth quickest, 1.3secs slower than the Turk, while series returnee David Salom was tenth best on his debut run with the Intermoto outfit.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Kenan Sofuoglu - Mahi Kawasaki [pic credit: Kawasaki Press]
Kenan Sofuoglu - Mahi Kawasaki [pic credit: Kawasaki Press]
Kenan Sofuoglu, World Supersport [Credit: Kenan Sofuoglu]
Kenan Sofuoglu, World Supersport [Credit: Kenan Sofuoglu]
Kazuki Watanabe, Team Go Eleven Kawasaki, [Credit:]
Lukas Trautmann, Superstock 1000, Yamaha [Credit: WSBK - Toni Borner]
David Salom, Kawasaki, Donington Park WSS, 2011 [pic credit: Ian Hopgood Photography]

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Ottoman Empire - Unregistered

January 29, 2013 1:57 AM

Kenan didn't headbutt no one last season. He explained it in a video and explained exactly what had happened and from the camera angle joe blow watched on the box made it look worse than it was. There wasn't any contact or malice intended. He was merely gesturing with his head for the other rider to give him space. The Linfoot incident was unfortunate, shouldn't have happened but it did. Time to build a bridge and move on. Rossi took out Stoner at Jerez and went on to finish 5th like nothing happened. Everyone moved on. Kenan is as professional, calm and talented racer as you can find. The guy is a triple world supersport champion and going for his 4th title. I believe next year he will taeke the step up to sbk but he is still a champion plying his trade in wss. Bring on the new season and Phillip Island.

prof-x - Unregistered

January 29, 2013 12:20 AM

Kenan is probably more intelligent than the average crash poster. Considering how Kenan doesnt have a big name country behind him, hes done quite the amazing job to conquer the 'european' series in SS. Now if he can just get a good (factory) bike in WSBK that is not plagued with electronics issues and is handy on the brakes (Kawasaki) he can run top 5, after that its a matter of how much support he gets from sponsors and the team.

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