The new Supersport World Championship season gets underway for Broc Parkes and David Salom at Phillip Island on Sunday and each rider is filled with confidence after the recent IMS test sessions.Broc was only 0.014 seconds from equalling Fabien Foret’s fastest time of the tests in Australia, with Salom also very close behind and third in the rankings. The tests concluded in good weather and with more of the same conditions predicted for race weekend, all in the official Kawasaki WSS team can look to the first race in the 12-round Championship with great confidence.For Parkes, who raced for the Provec Motocard.com team at the tail end of last year, starting the season at his home round is an exciting prospect, especially after setting good consistent race pace to go with a personal best time that pushed him to second in the rankings.
Salom, new to the team for 2011, was very impressive in testing, taking his time to build up pace and ending up in confident mood for the opening race of the year on Sunday February 27th.The Lorenzini by Leoni Kawasaki team also fielded Vittorio Iannuzzo and Massimo Roccoli at the tests, as they will do in the race on Sunday. Roccoli was 13th of 26 riders at the test; Iannuzzo 19th after only setting laps in the final session of the two days.
Broc Parkes: “I am happy to have had another couple of days to test because in Almeria it was a bit cold, and it rained in Portugal. So here we did a lot of kilometres on used tyres today to get to a good race set-up. We found some positive directions and the bike felt really good, so we stuck in a new tyre and went for a fast lap. I am not sure if the grip this afternoon was as high as this morning but maybe at the end, when I did my lap, it was OK. I am ready for the weekend and we are just going to analyse some data now. We should start the race weekend with basic set-up that we finished the tests with. We worked well with the new ‘big’ tyres. We did about 20 laps on one set and they were pretty consistent. I think even last year the bike was as good as anything, and this year it is a little better again.”
David Salom: “I am taking things gradually to understand each step we are making, and I am surprised a little that we have been able to go so fast and stay so near the top. I made a mistake and had a small fall in the tests, but no problem. I have to work hard and we have been pushing on the limit, but obviously it is working because our lap times are good. I am in a good team and on a good bike so I have to say I am happy to face the new season.”