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Suzuki GP bike 1.5 seconds off Marquez's lap record

Randy de Puniet proves the new bike is competitive

SUZUKI have completed a two-day test at Mugello concluding their European testing for this year where more valuable data has been collected allowing them to move forward from the 2013 test and development programme.

Test riders Randy de Puniet and Nobuatsu Aoki had a three-day test at Misano the previous week where further improvements were made to the Suzuki engine as well as a redesigned cowling to increase the overall top-speed. The team’s newly-elected chassis design and electronics allowed for improved traction control and engine braking.

With Misano and Mugello both following on from each other, it has provided positive data showing braking and corner-entry characteristics have been improved along with a lead in finding better rear-grip which the Suzuki MotoGP Test Team will be further-developing into 2014.

For the two-day test at Mugello, weather conditions remained dry with de Puniet setting his best lap of 1’49.260 on the last day which is 1.621s behind the lap record set by Marc Marquez this year.  

de Puniet’s plans for next season have not yet been confirmed yet, but the Frenchman explained: “In these two long days we’ve worked a lot on the electronic-mapping in different situations. We also understand that we need to work more on rear grip. We expected Mugello being a difficult track and from this test we gave a lot of information to the engineers, which they can now work on.

“I’m a little sad that this was the last test for this season as I’ve enjoyed riding this bike and working with the Suzuki Factory Team. I hope I will have more opportunities to ride again in the future and to continue improving this bike.”

Suzuki MotoGP Test Team Manager David Brivio said: “Randy has helped us a lot, even if at sometimes we’ve had to ask him for such a big effort between his regular MotoGP races. I would like to thank Randy very much for his contribution in finding strong and weak points of our project. His comments were – and will be – important for the development work we have ahead of us in the coming months. I would also like to thank the Aspar Team that allowed Randy to be available for this testing activity.” 

Brivio explained in June that Suzuki would not be returning for the 2014 season like most people had expected, but instead Suzuki thought more time was needed for development and therefore their return has been delayed until 2015.