Suzuki aiming to improve new GSV-R
Suzuki boss Paul Denning has said the Japanese factory still has plenty of room to improve its 2010 GSV-R MotoGP contender.
The new 2010 V4 has improved significantly during the shortened winter testing campaign.
But Denning admits that Suzuki is still playing catch up to match the impressive performance of rivals like Yamaha and Ducati.
Assessing Loris Capirossi and Alvaro Bautista’s progress so far on the new bike, Denning told MCN: “I think the only conclusions we can draw so far is that we have made the bike a little more user friendly and that the chassis appears to be working better in cooler conditions.
"The bike is definitely a step forward but everybody else has also taken a step forward. I think honestly speaking we’ve still got more catching up to do. I think the result potential for 2010 will be consistently better.
"I hope the fundamental issues have improved a lot and I hope we’re not struggling at certain tracks. But to bridge the gap to the top five group, we still need to work more.
"We have a really good all round motorcycle but it is still a little bit behind the top factory team contenders. HRC with all of its power appear also still to have a bike that is perhaps not working as well as they’d like.
"I’d say nothing out there is really as easy to ride as the Yamaha and I think everybody is looking for that predictability that allows the rider to be able concentrate 100 per cent on riding the bike fast and not controlling the bike.
"That’s certainly our target.”
Denning also conceded that Suzuki’s bid to reduce the gap on Yamaha and Ducati had been made more complex by the introduction of new testing and engine restrictions.
The winter testing schedule was cut to six days in 2010 and now Capirossi and Bautista are only allowed to use six engines for the entire campaign.
Suzuki is trying to bounce back from its worst season in 2004 last year and one of the major tasks of the winter has been to gain durability while not sacrificing crucial horsepower.
Denning added: “I have to say without doubt when you’ve got a gap to catch up the testing restrictions and the engine restrictions are a real pain.
"The combination of those restrictions makes the job doubly difficult. Chasing additional performance and durability is a tough challenge.
"You can easily get more durability by turning the rpm down, but you’re not going to be competitive, so it is a difficult balance.”