Tag Archives: Kyalami Tire Test

Spies and Sykes put the 2009 WSB Yamaha R1 through its paces in South Africa

spies2009 Yamaha Motor Italia Superbike riders Ben Spies and Tom Sykes endured some serious heat on their three day test in Kyalami. The young riders endured track temperatures approaching 50 degrees as they put the all-new-for-2009 Yamaha YZF-R1 through its paces on only its second outing on track.

The final day saw Spies pull in his fastest time of the test, taking second fastest honours overall and only a mere 0.2s behind Michel Fabrizio and beating Noriyuki Haga to the second spot, making him one of only three riders to break the 1.40 barrier with a time of 1.39″978. Tom Sykes was getting back on form until an unfortunate crash curtailed his testing for the day, he again improved on his times in the limited laps run with a 1.41″562.

Ben Spies: “I’m really happy with the bike, the team and the progress we’re making,” Spies continued. “This was the first time we had the opportunity to go out and size ourselves up against everyone in a major test. We’re ahead of where we thought we’d be at this point. There are two more test sessions this winter and I expect the bike will continue to improve as we move towards the season opener at Phillip Island in March. The fan support here is pretty amazing. It was a good week to get to know some of the other riders too. I had a lot of them come up and shake my hand and welcome me to the series. Max Biaggi came up and talked with me for awhile. That was pretty awesome for me. I’ve been a fan of Max since I was a kid. In AMA there might be two or three guys in testing who get down to business from start to finish,” Spies admitted. “There’s no lollygagging here. No one’s going around doing wheelies the length of the straightaway. Everyone pushes hard here all the time. The competition is going to be good for sure.”

Tom Sykes: “It’s been a tough test! I missed one and half days through this bug I’ve had so was a long way behind with laps. When I got out I still managed to get some good laps in and the team were brilliant, they improved the bike massively every time I came in. I’ve got a very sore shoulder from falling today but it’s nothing serious.”

Fabrizio sets fastest time ever in Kyalami in final day of tests.

Fabriozio sets fastest time in KyalamiThe first ever lap of Kyalami under 1 minute and 40 seconds came early in the final day of WSB testing, thanks to Michel Fabrizio, the star of these tests so far. With little over half an hour gone Fabrizio set a time of 1’39.714, the best ever lap of Kyalami by a motorcycle.

With the weather shaping up to be scorching once more, the track temperature will be rising as the day goes on, then dropping again in the late afternoon. The teams should therefore have one final chance to take their best times shortly before the finish of track action, at 5pm local time.

Source | SBK

Fabrizio still on top after 2nd day of testing in Kyalami.

Michel Fabrizio

Michel Fabrizio once again set the pace for Ducati Xerox on the second day of Pirelli tyre development tests at the Kyalami circuit in South Africa. The young Italian clocked a time of 1 minute 40.256 seconds, one second beneath his day 1 time and some way quicker than the circuit’s previous Superbike lap records which date back to 2002.

“I’m not entirely satisfied today either because I made a small mistake on my good lap, otherwise I’m convinced I could have got below the 1’40” mark” declared the 24 year-old from Rome.

The battle for second place behind Fabrizio was fast and furious, and it eventually went to German Max Neukirchner on the 2009-spec Suzuki GSX-R1000K9. Ducati’s new signing Noriyuki Haga finally dialled into the leaders’ pace after three crashes yesterday to end up with third quickest time.

On a day in which temperatures soared to a torrid 31°C and 47°C on track, fourth place went to the talented 23 year-old from Northern Ireland, Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda), this year’s Supersport championship runner-up.

After a stunning performance yesterday, the second day proved to be less fortunate for Ben Spies, Yamaha’s American rookie signing, who crashed out harmlessly at Turn 6: his R1 machine was severely damaged and the Texan finished the day early. Carlos Checa and Rea were two other riders who crashed out today.

With the top nine in the space of eight-tenths of a second, Superbike is shaping up to be ultra-competitive. Aprilia are already in the leading group with their RSV4, Nakano currently lying sixth and Biaggi ninth, while development work is continuing on the BMW S1000RR machines of Troy Corser and Ruben Xaus on their first major testing appearance.

Day 2 times: 1. Fabrizio (Ita-Ducati) 1’40″256 (44 laps); 2. Neukirchner (Ger-Suzuki) 1’40″688 (50); 3. Haga (Jpn-Ducati) 1’40″709 (53); 4. Rea (GB-Honda) 1’40″842 (40); 5. Kagayama (Jpn-Suzuki) 1’40″959 (52); 6. Nakano (Jpn-Aprilia) 1’40″968 (42); 7. Checa (Spa-Honda) 1’40″995 (31); 8. Spies (Usa-Yamaha) 1’41″049 (38); 9.  Biaggi (Ita-Aprilia) 1’41″077 (56); 10. Kiyonari (Jpn-Honda) 1’41″412 (84); 11. Corser (Aus-Bmw) 1’41″986 (34); 12. Xaus (Spa-Bmw) 1’42″438 (40); 13. Sykes (GB-Yamaha) 1’42″933 (18).

Source | SBK

Day 2 of tire testing in Kyalami shows Spies making big progress.

Ben Spies continued to slash the odds on him proving a title contender in his rookie World Superbike season as he eased to the second quickest time on the first day of testing around Kyalami.

Having made a fine impression on his debut at Portimao last month, Spies continued where he left off in South Africa, despite having never experienced the circuit before.

Getting more miles aboard the Yamaha Italia machine under his belt, Spies completed 46 laps over the course of the day on the way to a best time of 1min 41.599secs, around three tenths adrift of pace setter Michel Fabrizio
With two days of testing remaining, the multiple AMA Champion has already given the bike his approval.

“We were most interested in trying out the bike in hotter track conditions than in Portimao. The handling is good; the engine comes in really smooth exiting corners and it lays the power down well. Top end makes no difference in that situation and the engine really drives well from low down.

“I like this track; it’s almost like some AMA tracks and it’s not too technical, not that difficult to learn, but I was having a lot of fun riding on it.”

Source | Crash.net

World Superbike arrives in Kyalami South Africa to begin tire testing.

The top World Superbike teams have arrived at Kyalami in South Africa for the first leg of winter testing in preparation for the 2009 season, which gets underway on March 1 in Australia.

The three days of testing, from Wednesday 10 to Friday 12 December, will help to develop the evolution tyres that one-make supplier Pirelli is producing for next season. Kyalami will once again be the venue for a round of the championship for production-based bikes for the first time since 2002: the South African Round is scheduled for May 17 next year.

Kyalami will see a number of important debuts, in particular for BMW who shape up to their first head-to-head tests against their rivals: the four-cylinder S1000RR machines will be in the hands of Troy Corser (Australia) and Ruben Xaus (Spain). It will also be the first major test for another of the new entries in 2009, Aprilia, with their four-cylinder V65° engine RSV4 and two top riders of the calibre of Max Biaggi and Shinya Nakano.

All change also in the world champion Ducati Xerox team, where Noriyuki Haga of Japan takes over at the helm from Troy Bayliss, who retired from racing last month in Portugal.

Yamaha Motor Italia (with Ben Spies and Tom Sykes) and Suzuki Alstare (with Max Neukirchner and Yukio Kagayama) will be putting the mileage on their new 2009 bikes, while Honda Ten Kate can again count on three of their tried and tested CBR1000RR machines for Carlos Checa, Ryuichi Kiyonari and Jonathan Rea. The only factory team absent at Kyalami will be Kawasaki Paul Bird Motorsport, which is scheduled to make its testing debut next month in Spain.

The official winter test programme will continue from January 23-25 at Portimao in Portugal.


Related Post – Haga Crashes out 2 laps into Ducati WSB debut