Today's qualifying session for the Czech Republic Grand Prix at Brno saw Kawasaki riders Shinya Nakano and Alex Hofmann left down in eleventh and fourteenth places - and taught the team's technical director that they'll need a completely revised package for 2006.

Nakano's best lap put the Japanese rider within one-second of pole position, while Hofmann was just 0.4s off a top ten place on the grid - but both face a tough task during tomorrow's race around the fast and bumpy 5.4km Brno circuit.

Following a lack of front-end feel and chassis balance yesterday, both riders reported more competitive set-ups today after further adjustments to chassis and engine management settings.

But, after assessing the data collected and a study of lap times, Kawasaki technical manager, Ichiro Yoda, indicated that the team have effectively hit a 'glass ceiling' and will need a totally new machine to make the next step forward during 2006.

"Our race pace is in the low two minute bracket, perhaps some 1min 59s but this is not enough for this style of fast track," he began. "Firstly, we need more top end power, but what a track like Brno also shows us is that Kawasaki's priority for next year must be a completely revised bike package - engine, power delivery, chassis and electronics."

"We are facing a difficult time in tomorrow's race. Fortunately with Shinya and Alex, I know we have two riders who will do their maximum to deliver as many points as possible. But it will not be easy with our current Ninja ZX-RR package," underlined team manager Harald Eckl.

 

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