The pre-season test at Donington Park ended on a positive note for Triumph ValMoto - the only all-British entry in the 2003 British Supersport Championship - as riders Jim Moodie and Craig Jones concluded the two 40-minute sessions in seventh and tenth places respectively.

"I've really enjoyed getting out on the Triumph ValMoto Daytona 600 again," said Moodie, 1.7secs slower than pace setter Karl Harris. "The bike's handling in incredible - it turns in like nothing else I've ever ridden to the extent that some sections were almost effortless. We've done a lot of work and come to some positive conclusions.

"Obviously I'd have liked to have been the fastest out there but I'm happy with the progress we've made and we'd have only been kidding ourselves if I'd put on a qualifier for a couple of laps just to make a point," added Moodie.

Jones actually topped the timesheets for the majority of the morning and despite suffering a minor crash, was still in fourth place at the end of the first session before slipping to tenth overall.

"I have no complaints whatsoever about the bike," said Jones, 0.2secs off his more experienced team-mate. "We've given a lot of good riders and established machines a real run for their money today. Donington is a very tricky circuit to gear a bike for and I didn't have quite the right set-up.

"I took a brief trip into the gravel, which was a little embarrassing, but there was no real harm done and I learned from the experience," he said of the off. "The first race is just a week away and I'm confident that we have what it takes to be at the front of the pack."

The team stated that Moodie and Jones' best lap times were merely a by-product of their search for correct gearing at the 1.96-mile circuit, rather than an out-and-out attempt to top the timesheets - as Team Manager Jack Valentine explained:

"I'm extremely pleased with the way things have gone," Valentino declared. "The important thing to remember is that this weekend was only a test session - not a race. We've learned a lot more about the bikes and know exactly what we have to do make up the time."

"It would have been nice to be at the top of the timesheets but that wasn't really the point of the weekend. We were holding back in one or two areas that would have put us much higher up the order but to be competitive at this early stage is very encouraging indeed," he said.

The first round of the British Supersport Championship takes place at Silverstone on 30 March.

 

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