Thursday, 6 February 2014 | MYT 10:18 PM
Suzuki prepare for MotoGP entrance next year
SEPANG: At the far end of the pitlane, away from prying eyes, a team is quietly working in the garage at the Sepang International Circuit.
Team Suzuki is a new flavour to the MotoGP test this year as they put their machine through rigorous sessions at the track to retrieve valuable data.
The Japanese manufacturer last competed in the MotoGP class in 2011 and are looking to feature as a factory team next year alongside Honda, Yamaha and Ducati.
Test riders Randy De Puniet and Nobuatsu Aoki rode endlessly to test the newly-developed Suzuki machine during the three-day test.
On the first day, the team ran old electronic control units (ECU) before switching to the standard ECU that would be used from this season.
Team manager Davide Brivio said getting the setting right with the electronics is crucial as everybody will be playing on a level field.
“We are busy redesigning the new software for the test here and it is the first real shakedown for us,” he said.
“We are quite satisfied and have found a good level of performance. We just need to get some experience to adjust to the new system.”
Getting a quick lap time is not the major aim at the test.
De Puniet was running an average of 60 laps per day to get sufficient data for the engineers. He concluded the test yesterday in 17th spot on 2:02.486 – almost three seconds off fastest man Marc Marquez of Honda (1:59.533). Aoki was further down in 26th spot on 2:05.686.
The team might be a feature in some MotoGP races towards the end of the season on a wildcard ticket.