The newly formed Rizla Suzuki Superbike team is looking forward to the start of the 2002 racing season at Silverstone on Bank Holiday Monday, April 1.

With huge holiday crowds expected to flock to the famous midlands circuit, Rizla Suzuki is aiming to make its debut race-day a successful one.

The team will be campaigning new 2002 GSX-R1000 Superbikes that are allowed to compete for the first time thanks to new regulations allowing 1000cc four cylinder machines to go up against 1000cc twins.

Rizla Suzuki reigning British Champion John Reynolds finished an open test at Silverstone last week with the third quickest time and is in high spirits.

Reynolds said: "We tested the bike at Silverstone along with everybody else and recorded a good time. But we are still learning about the machine and sorting out the handling of the bike. The test was vital and shows us the direction we need to go during qualifying and for the race. We will be right on the pace when the first race starts, that's for sure."

His team-mate Karl Harris, the reigning British Supersport Champion, finished fifth in the same test.

Harris noted: "We are still developing the bike and it is all coming together nicely. People that know me know that I am a better racer than a qualifier. I'm happy with the machine set-up and I just want to start racing and fighting for the victories, it's going to be an awesome season."

Nick Medd is the Rizla Suzuki Scholarship rider and he finished eighth at the recent test at Silverstone after suffering a minor crash in the second session that left him unhurt. He said: "I know I can ride at least two-seconds faster than I am at the moment. The potential is all there with both me and the bike and we are working hard to get everything ready for the first round."

Team manager Paul Denning is optimistic about the 2002 season. He concluded: "We have a new bike built under new rules and two new riders in the team. We also have a new sponsor in Rizla. That's a lot of change to cope with during the pre-season, but they are all changes for the better and the team is buzzing with confidence. The preparation is nearly all completed, it's time to race."

The Superbike racing starts at 1.30pm on Monday April 1st at Silverstone.

 

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