Feb 25, 2002
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From a press release issued by Castrol Honda:<BR><BR>BAYLISS TOPS SUPERBIKE TIMES IN SPAIN<BR><BR>Defending World Superbike Champion Troy Bayliss set the fastest time in the three-day pre-season test session which ended at Valencia, Spain on Monday.<BR><BR>The Australian was 0.2s faster than Ducati team-mate Ben Bostrom as Aprilia rider Noriyuki Haga took the third best time on his return to Superbike after finishing runner-up in the 2000 championship.<BR><BR>Spaniard Ruben Xaus was fourth fastest ahead of a disappointed Colin Edwards who ended the test in fifth place and by crashing, without injury, on his very last lap.<BR><BR>Edwards completed 240 laps of the 2.49-mile circuit, more laps than any other rider, and remains in confident mood for the opening round on March 10 at Valencia.<BR><BR>"I had the qualifying tyre in the back of the machine and was going for the big lap," Edwards explained. "I came out of the left-hand third corner and before I'd changed direction for the right-hander I was down.<BR><BR>"I guess lap 241 was one too many. But we've had a very good test and got through a lot of work in readiness for next week's races here. We've also found a really good Michelin race tyre but I need to find a one-lap Superpole tyre that suits me and the machine - that's what we've left Michelin working on before next week's first round."<BR><BR>Superbike newcomer Hitoyasu Izutsu was sixth fastest on a Kawasaki with British Ducati rider Neil Hodgson improving on his previous two days' performance to finish seventh.<BR><BR>Final World Superbike test times:<BR><BR>1 Troy Bayliss, Australia (Ducati) 1:34.261<BR><BR>2 Ben Bostrom, USA (Ducati) 1:34.401<BR><BR>3 Noriyuki Haga, Japan (Aprilia) 1:34.777<BR><BR>4 Ruben Xaus, Spain (Ducati) 1:34.908<BR><BR>5 Colin Edwards, USA (Castrol Honda) 1:35.053<BR><BR>6 Hitoyasu Izutsu, Japan (Kawasaki)<BR>1:35.116<BR><BR>7 Neil Hodgson, GB (Ducati) 1:35.459<BR><BR>8 Gregorio Lavilla, Spain (Kawasaki) 1:35.584<BR><BR>9 Pier-Francesco Chili, Italy (Ducati) 1:35.611 <BR><BR>10 Lucio Pedercini, Italy (Ducati) 1:35.618<BR>