Dec 18, 2002
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From a press release issued by Aprilia:<BR><BR>Aprilia Racing Press Information<BR>Valencia (Spain)<BR>Private Tests<BR>17/18 December 2002<BR><BR>Wednesday 18 December<BR><BR>Private Aprilia MotoGP tests in Valencia wind up. RS Cube developing fast.<BR><BR>On the closing day of the Valencia tests, the Aprilia MotoGP team's work was slowed down by afternoon rain. Colin Edwards continued his work on the settings of the new RS Cube for 2003, notching up 48 laps with the bike in race configuration throughout. The American ace was thus able to discover all the qualities of the three-cylinder from Noale on a track - Valencia - that he knows like the back of his hand. Rain started coming down at about two o'clock this afternoon, and this hampered the tyre test that had been planned for the moment when Colin had started aiming for top lap speeds. Noriyuki Haga put in about 40 laps and was due to try out the Cube 2003 for the first time, but bad weather put an end his hopes and he will get his first impressions of the new bike only in the next session of tests.<BR><BR>"I'm very pleased with this third session of winter tests", said Colin Edwards. "Especially because I know the Valencia circuit really well. It's very different from Jerez, where there's last-minute braking and rapid acceleration: Here, you can build up a constant, harmonious rhythm, and there are many corners to connect together so you get a smooth ride. I know each hump and each detail of this track, and in these conditions you can feel every aspect of the bike perfectly. And you can appreciate all its qualities. We've made lots of progress and work on the settings is going flawlessly. We've also tried out some tyre solutions, but it's a pity about the rain as I was gradually building up on the lap times. What really matters, and what I'm very pleased about, though, is that I've got a great feeling for the Cube."<BR><BR>"I can't say it's been dead simple getting the settings right on my bike" said Noriyuki Haga, who a few days ago married his companion Yurie in Japan. "I didn't have the same feeling with the Cube on the Valencia track as I did during the recent tests in Jerez, so I worked hard on the settings of the bike. Even so, I still didn't manage to get exactly the right set-up and then unfortunately the bad weather prevented me from making my first tests on the RS 3 for 2003. Still, I'm happy with the way work's going ahead for the next season."<BR><BR>Colin Edwards – 48 laps – Best Time: 1:34.5<BR><BR>Noriyuki Haga – 42 laps – Best Time: 1:36.0<BR>