Jan 30, 2002
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From a press release:<BR><BR>SBK PRESS RELEASE<BR>Australia - Winter Test<BR>Phillip Island 29/1 - 1st/2, 2002<BR><BR>Wednesday 29 January 2002 <BR><BR>Reigning World Champion Troy Bayliss set an excellent first day time of 1:32.944 on his 2002 Ducati 996R at the official Phillip Island SBK test sessions. The absolute fastest Superbike lap of the circuit, set by Troy Corser in 1999, stands at 1:32.193, putting Bayliss' time - set on race tyres and in high winds - into some perspective.<BR><BR>Second quickest was his Ducati Infostrada team-mate Ruben Xaus, despite suffering a small fall from his machine at the base of Lukey Heights when his fairing ground-out on the sloping tarmac.<BR><BR>Lone Castrol Honda entrant Colin Edwards, running a Suzuka 8-Hour spec engine in his VTR SP2, was third quickest, half a second off Bayliss' best time.<BR><BR>In fourth place on the time sheets came Noriyuki Haga who was on very impressive form for a rider who was having only his second taste of dry weather Aprilia testing. A former championship challenger in seasons past, Haga has proved to be right back in the Superbike groove, and has settled well into his Aprilia team.<BR><BR>Former Australian Superbike star turned SBK rider Steve Martin put his years of Phillip Island experience to excellent use to go fifth fastest on his Pirelli-shod DFX Ducati, taking the early-season scalp of factory Kawasaki rider Hitoyasu Izutsu, who is a new full time entrant into SBK this season.<BR><BR>Ben Bostrom, the lone Dunlop-supplied factory Ducati rider, took seventh, holding off his frequent 2001 season rival Neil Hodgson, from the HM Plant Ducati team. Bostrom was another rider to suffer a fall on the opening day, without serious injury.<BR><BR>James Toseland, Chris Walker and Alessandro Antonello rounded out the 11 Superbike riders on show, and each of them will have two more days to improve their lap times and machine setups.<BR><BR>In the Supersport class, Pere Riba from the Ten Kate Honda team was easily the fastest man on track, setting a best of 1:37.079 despite the high winds.<BR><BR>World Champion Andrew Pitt fell from his factory Kawasaki at high speed but suffered only bruising after hitting a trackside tyre wall. His accident stopped him challenging Riba, or his fellow countryman Chris Vermeulen (from the van Zon Honda TKR team) who was second quickest.<BR><BR>Fabien Foret, winner of two WSS races in 2001, was fourth on the stopwatch, while technical glitches prevented Karl Muggeridge from making his usual good practice showing.<BR><BR>Two World Supersport rookies, John McGuinness and James Ellison, made up the final two places on the World Supersport sheets.<BR>