WSB : Strong showing for Yamaha in first Silverstone qualifying
Round: 5 – United Kingdom
Circuit: Silverstone
Date: 26 May 2006
Temp: 17ºC
Weather: Dry

Yamaha Motor Italia rider Noriyuki Haga shone in first qualifying at a damp and windy Silverstone today, ending the day in fourth place with team-mate Andrew Pitt an equally strong sixth.

Morning practice took place in wet conditions and although the track was mostly dry for the one-hour afternoon qualifying, the tricky conditions caught out many big name riders and led to two stoppages caused by riders crashing.

Haga, who gave the Yamaha YZF-R1 its first world superbike podium finish at Silverstone 12 months ago, looked comfortable in both the wet and dry conditions, setting the third fastest time in the rainy morning session. The Japanese rider declared himself happy with the basic set-up of his Yamaha but will work overnight with his team to further improve the machine ahead of Sunday’s two 28-lap races.

Pitt made a big improvement in the closing stages of the session to end as the day’s sixth fastest rider at one of his least favourite circuits. Having spent the session experimenting with the set-up of his YZF-R1, the Australian effectively switched back to his base settings to jump up the grid.

With quarter of an hour to go Yamaha Motor France’s Sebastien Gimbert topped the leader board. The Frenchman had suffered a spectacular crash in the morning practice, when he slid off his R1 going down the start-finish straight. The accident wrecked his machine and left him with abrasions on his back. Despite the handicap he finished the day 11th. Yamaha Motor France’s Japanese duo had tougher days, with Norick Abe 16th and Shinichi Nakatomi 20th on his first visit to the circuit. Local wild-card Tommy Hill was 12th on another YZF-R1.

Grid positions will be decided in tomorrow’s superpole session for the top 16 riders from qualifying. With rain a strong possibility tomorrow morning, the superpole participants could well be decided on today’s times. Fastest rider today was championship leader Troy Bayliss (Ducati), ahead of world champion Troy Corser (Suzuki) and Fonsi Nieto (Kawasaki).Noriyuki Haga (Yamaha Motor Italia)”Not so bad although I am a little bit angry not to get pole as I had a small problem on what should have been my fastest lap. The feeling with the bike is already good in both the wet and dry but we will work more tomorrow to try and make it better for the races.”

Andrew Pitt (Yamaha Motor Italia)
“The track was a bit patchy: you’d go in on the dry but then hit a wet bit, but it went ok for us and I’m quite happy. We started the session off well but got a bit lost with the changes we made, before going back to basics to get the lap time. We’ve still got a bit of a problem with the bike wheelying too much but that’s the only point where I think I’m losing some time.”

Sebastien Gimbert (Yamaha Motor France)
“I am happy with how things have gone today. The times are very close with just 0.7 second between me and the pole. It was good to be at the top of the timesheets but at the end I went out to test the race tyre rather than going for an improved time.

Norick Abe (Yamaha Motor France)
“This morning the feeling with the bike was not so good, but then I have never been able to feel comfortable with the superbike in wet conditions. The afternoon was not so bad but the conditions were quite strange, with many riders going down at one corner. Every lap I would see someone else go down there and as a result I was not able to fully attack that corner until the very end. I am still having some problems with the right hand I injured in Monza. This might cause me some problems in the race, as there is a lot of hard braking at this circuit. I am happy to be in the top 16 as I will be in superpole if it rains tomorrow morning, although I hope it is dry and I can show my best.”

Shinichi Nakatomi (Yamaha Motor France)
“I had a crash at the same corner as all the other riders and this meant I could not be as high as I like. I went out on a different tyre option and it caught me out but I am not injured and hope we can have some dry conditions tomorrow.”

Massimo Meregalli (Team Coordinator – Yamaha Motor Italia) “A good day. Nori’s lap times are very consistent and he seem to be as fast as anyone, while Andrew made just a few changes to the set-up we have used at Monza and Mugello, suggesting that he has found a base setting that really works for him. He started out by following Toseland for a few laps but found that he could pass and go faster on his own. Compared with last year he is looking very strong and I’m pleased because both the riders are happy with their set-ups and seem to have good tyre life around this circuit.”

Round: 5 – United Kingdom
Circuit: Silverstone
Circuit Length: 3619
Lap Record: 1′ 27.130 (Regis Laconi, 2005) Fastest Lap Ever: 1′ 26.679 (Yukio Kagayama, 2005)
Date: 26 May 2006
Temp: 17ºC

Session 1 :
Pos.  Rider  Manufacturer  Nat.  1st Qualifying
1  T. Bayliss  Ducati  AUS   1′ 27.011
2  T. Corser  Suzuki  AUS   1′ 27.068
3  F. Nieto  Kawasaki  ESP   1′ 27.205
4  N. Haga  Yamaha  JPN   1′ 27.364
5  J. Toseland  Honda  GBR   1′ 27.418
6  A. Pitt  Yamaha  AUS   1′ 27.539
7  Y. Kagayama  Suzuki  JPN   1′ 27.599
8  K. Muggeridge  Honda  AUS   1′ 27.648
9  C. Walker  Kawasaki  GBR   1′ 27.656
10  R. Laconi  Kawasaki  FRA   1′ 27.721
11  S. Gimbert  Yamaha  FRA   1′ 27.730
12  T. Hill  Yamaha  GBR   1′ 27.807
13  R. Xaus  Ducati  ESP   1′ 27.810
14  A. Barros  Honda  BRA   1′ 27.940
15  M. Fabrizio  Honda  ITA   1′ 28.078
16  N. Abe  Yamaha  JPN   1′ 28.246
20  S. Nakatomi  Yamaha  JPN   1′ 28.503

WSS : Curtain and Parkes shine in Silverstone gloom
Round: 5 – United Kingdom WSS
Circuit: Silverstone
Date: 26 May 2006
Temp: 17ºC
Weather: Cloudy

Yamaha Motor Germany riders Kevin Curtain and Broc Parkes gave a good showing on the opening day of supersport action in Silverstone, ending a damp day second and third on the overnight grid.

After a morning of rain, supersport qualifying started in damp conditions. Running dry weather tyres the fastest men lapped around two seconds off lap record pace in the difficult conditions. Despite a clear dry line having formed around the circuit, the riders were faced with standing water streaming across the circuit at several points and the mental problem of a light drizzle being blown into onto their visors.

Fastest in the session was championship leader Sebastien Charpentier (Honda), who set a best lap of 1:30.516 – one-and-a-half seconds off his own lap record. Curtain set a best of 1:30.711 in the closing stages of the session, with Parkes a further three-tenths behind on 1:31.001. Both YZF-R6 riders declared themselves happy with their day’s work, believing that they would have set quicker times had a red flag not stopped the session prematurely. Wild-card Pere Riba (Kawasaki) completes the provisional front row with Yamaha Team Italia rider Massimo Roccoli leading the second row. Spaniard David Checa was 13th fastest on the Yamaha GMT94 YZF-R6 with Gianluca Vizziello 15th on the other Yamaha Team Italia machine.

Round: 5 – United Kingdom WSS
Circuit: Silverstone
Circuit Length: 3619
Lap Record: 1′ 29.027 (Sebastien Charpentier, 2005) Fastest Lap Ever: 1′ 28.750 (Sebastien Charpentier, 2005)
Date: 26 May 2006
Temp: 17ºC

Session 1 :
Pos.  Rider  Manufacturer  Nat.  1st Qualifying
1  S. Charpentier  Honda  FRA   1′ 30.516
2  K. Curtain  Yamaha  AUS   1′ 30.711
3  B. Parkes  Yamaha  AUS   1′ 31.001
4  P. Riba  Kawasaki  ESP   1′ 31.492
5  M. Roccoli  Yamaha  ITA   1′ 31.657
6  M. Lagrive  Honda  FRA   1′ 31.692
7  X. Fores  Yamaha  ESP   1′ 31.963
8  J. Stigefelt  Honda  SWE   1′ 32.136
9  K. Fujiwara  Honda  JPN   1′ 32.320
10  Y. Tibero  Honda  FRA   1′ 32.450
11  M. Sanchini  Yamaha  ITA   1′ 32.533
12  K. Andersen  Suzuki  NOR   1′ 32.595
13  D. Checa  Yamaha  ESP   1′ 32.649
14  B. Veneman  Suzuki  NED   1′ 32.732
15  G. Vizziello  Yamaha  ITA   1′ 32.755
16  M. Berger  Kawasaki  FRA   1′ 32.920
17  J. Enjolras  Yamaha  FRA   1′ 32.995
27  A. Corradi  Yamaha  ITA   1′ 34.645
29  V. Ivanov  Yamaha  RUS   1′ 35.041
30  B. Martinez  Yamaha  ESP   1′ 35.154


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