BSB: Guintoli upbeat despite lack of pace

Published: 29 April 2017

Sylvain Guintoli remains upbeat despite another difficult day trying to dial in the all new GSX-R1000 as the third round of the 2017 MCE British Superbike Championship got underway at Oulton Park.

It’s been a baptism of fire for the Frenchman and his Bennetts Suzuki team as they try to get to grips with the latest generation GSX-R, and while he languished down in 13th on the timesheets after two free practice sessions at the Cheshire circuit, he remains confident they can turn it around with time.

An added benefit for the Hawk Racing-run team is the presence of a race engineer from Suzuki Japan, who has come to offer direct assistance from the Japanese factory as they look to get the new machine up and running.

“This weekend we have one of the technicians from Suzuki MotoGP, which is a great opportunity for us to improve our performance,” Guintoli said. “We’re putting the work in but this isn’t an easy challenge.

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“We have a lot to do, a lot to understand and a lot to experiment with including the fact that I’m not very experienced on tracks like this. It’s a bit of everything that’s going in and a lot of work. We’re gaining understanding all the time, and I think we will at one point see the fruit from the seeds we’ve planted.”

While it’s been a tough start for the GSX-R in the Superbike class, Guintoli takes confidence from team-mate Richard Cooper’s strong opening performances in the Superstock 1000 category.

“There’s nothing particular we’re working on, it’s just blending everything together and making sure it’s fast. There’s a big difference in having a very strong base to work with, and the bike is clearly strong looking at Richard in Superstock, and making it into a strong contender in Superbike is an interesting challenge, but it’s not easy. Our competitors are very strong and experienced and we need to catch up.” 

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