March 31, 2005
World Superbike Championship leaders Troy Corser and Yukio Kagayama are looking forward to more success at the second round of the series at Phillip Island, Australia this weekend.
The Team Alstare Suzuki Corona Extra dominated the first round in Qatar and is approaching Phillip Island in a positive frame of mind. The duo tested there in January this year. Both recorded good lap times and know they will be in good shape for the weekend ahead.
Phillip Island is a fast-flowing, technically-challenging track and one of the best-loved circuits in the calendar and a particular favourite of Corser. Before he arrived on the world stage, the Australian spent many weekends charging round the 4.445 kilometer circuit on a variety of different machinery and got to know the place probably better then any other current World Superbike competitor. In recent years though, he has only ridden there as often as most current riders, but he still regards the track as 'home'.
"Although I live in Europe these days and probably don't put in any more laps of Phillip Island than any other rider, I still love the track. It is fast, flowing and technically quite hard, but it's a real blast to ride and great fun when you get it right. It's a track that demands good circuit knowledge because, if you want to go fast, you've got to know it inside out. Last year, I was on a different bike, so I am really looking forward to being on a very good and fast bike this year.
"My team mate Yukio is leading the championship at the moment, but I am confident that I can get a couple of good results here and then hopefully the tables should be reversed and I'll be on top of the standings. That's not to say he will not be a threat, because he will. He is so aggressive - everywhere! Also, I expect the Ducati boys, Toseland and Laconi to be strong and perhaps also Vermeulen and Muggeridge. And you cannot rule out Haga and Pitt. It's going to be a great day for the fans though, so I hope we get a good crowd."
"Phillip Island is not an easy track, but I like it a lot. It is a challenge for sure, but when you put in a good lap, it is a very good feeling. Troy-san has been round it many times so he has a lot more circuit knowledge then me, but I was not so far behind at the tests and I know I can make progress. Last year, I was not involved in the World Superbike Championship, so I did not race here, but that is not a problem for me.
"Of course, I am happy to be leading the championship right now, but it is very early days in the season and I expect that many other teams will become stronger during the year. I don't know if I can beat Troy at Phillip Island, but I will try my hardest as usual. If Troy and I can leave Phillip Island in first and second in the championship, we will all be very happy."
2004 Phillip Island results:
Race 1: 1 Laconi (F- Ducati), 2 Vermeulen (Aus-Honda), 3 Martin (Aus-Ducati). 13 Troy Corser (Aus-Petronas), Yukio Kagayama - DNS.
Race 2: 1 McCoy (Aus-Ducati), 2 Vermeulen, 3 Chili (I-Ducati). 5 Troy Corser (Aus-Petronas), Yukio Kagayama - DNS.
Source: Team Suzuki Press Office