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Dec 17, 2002

Ducati Starts MotoGP Test At Phillip Island

From a press release issued by Ducati Corse:<BR><BR>DUCATI CORSE PRESS INFORMATION<BR>Phillip Island (Australia)<BR>Tuesday 17 December, 2002<BR><BR>THREE-DAY DUCATI MOTOGP TEST GETS UNDERWAY AT PHILLIP ISLAND - POSITIVE TIMES RECORDED BY BOTH RIDERS<BR><BR>The Ducati Corse MotoGP squad has made the long haul overseas to the spectacular Phillip Island circuit not far from Melbourne in Australia for its latest round of testing, the final session before the Christmas break.<BR><BR>After the excellent times recorded two weeks ago at Jerez, Loris Capirossi and Troy Bayliss were both right on the pace with the new Ducati Desmosedici in the first day of testing.<BR><BR>Conditions were excellent in the morning, but strong winds disturbed the work of the squad in the afternoon. High temperatures (air 24°C / track 33°C) , similar to those encountered during October's Australian GP, allowed the two Ducati Corse riders to complete the workload for the Desmosedici, which revolved mainly around testing various cooling components and all-new Michelin tyres for the 2003 MotoGP championship. <BR><BR>Both riders tested on the 17" fronts used in MotoGP, and Troy Bayliss, on his home track, was finally able to get to grips with this particular tyre solution. During his 87 laps, he was able to put home track knowledge to good use to set a quickest time of 1:32.8. <BR><BR>48 laps today for Loris Capirossi, who despite harmlessly sliding off at the Honda Curve with no damage to the bike, managed to return to the pits and resume testing immediately. A series of other minor problems prevented the Italian from stringing together a lengthy series of laps, but despite this he recorded a time of 1:32.4, which was close to the lap record set during the Australian GP.<BR><BR>The test also highlighted the performance of Michelin's 2003 tyres, which remained at an excellent working temperature despite the particular difficulty of the Phillip Island track, which presents a long left-hand curve leading onto the pit-straight.<BR><BR>Tomorrow Wednesday will be a rest day for Ducati Corse at Phillip Island, while the tests resume Thursday and conclude the following day.