Attack Performance Racing (APR) and rider Steve Rapp tested the team’s MotoGP Claiming Rule Team (CRT) racebike this past weekend, August 4-5, during a track day event at Auto Club Raceway, in Fontana, California. Team Owner/Crew Chief Richard Stanboli said the crew was able to successfully sort out a lot of the basics that held Rapp back during the team’s CRT debut July 27-29 at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. “We never had a chance to run through the basics,” said Stanboli, who lost all of his opportunities to test prior to the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix due to shock and bodywork vendors failing to supply parts on schedule. “We showed up with something that was very [raw].” Stanboli said he had issues dialing in new MoTec engine control electronics at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca due to “noise” in the rear wheel speed sensor and the mid-corner transition from off-throttle to on-throttle could have been smoother. And the suspension was too stiff for the Bridgestone tires. The biggest issue at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix, however, involved rider ergonomics. “We never got the rider in the right position so he could do his job,” said Stanboli. “You have to get the ergonomics right before you can do the chassis. If you recall Colin [Edwards] talking about you have to make the bike rideable before you can start working on any particular feature on his bike. It’s the same kind of thing, except we had to do it in an hour. “We were putting seat padding in the front to push the rider back. Steve thought the seat was sloped too much coming down the hills. That was pushing him into the tank, so he couldn’t brake as hard as he wanted. He was just really uncomfortable on the bike, and we just made a huge improvement at Fontana. “We reshaped the back of the gas tank literally overnight, changed the slope of the seat and moved some padding around. That put him in a much better position to be able to hang off the motorcycle and lean forward. He was way, way more comfortable on the motorcycle after a day and a half out there.” In addition to getting the ergonomics of the APR sorted out, Stanboli reported that he got the engine electronics and fly-by-wire throttle dialed in while Rapp rode on 16.5-inch Pirelli slicks at Auto Club Speedway. Stanboli said he and Rapp will focus on setting up the APR’s suspension to suit Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s (IMS) infield road course and the stiff Bridgestone MotoGP tires during a one-day test at IMS on August 11.
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