Chris Walker believes a new Ohlins rear shock set-up could be the key to better results in the World Supersport Championship.
Walker completed a two-day test at the recently resurfaced Brno circuit in Czech Republic and came away with a new improved set-up, which he hopes will work in next weekend’s race at Misano.
Last time out in Nurburgring, Walker rode a heroic race to climb up from 20th to ninth place, but compared to his main Honda and Yamaha rivals is struggling for power and front end feel onboard his Gil Motorsport Kawasaki.
Speaking to MCN, Walker said: “I didn’t realise the track has been resurfaced. They’ve done a really good job and although it was slippery on the first day it definitely improved after a few laps. At the moment I think it’s about as fast as the old surface but I think it will get faster.
“I was able to do some pretty good times, about the same as pole last year and I also did a 15 lap race run, which went well.”
Walker and his Kawasaki squad benefited from the full-time support of Ohlins technician Peter Goddard at the test, who arrived with numerous front fork and rear shock set-ups to try.
Walker said: “We tried everything and we’ve ended up with a pretty different rear shock setting. The forks are similar to what we had. Although I don’t think the changes are going to give us the two seconds we need, it might give us one second and that means we’ll be closer.”
Whilst at Brno, Walker was sharing the track with the Sterilgarda Ducati pairing of Max Biaggi and Ruben Xaus along with the Ducati MotoGP test team of Nicoli Canepa.
Walker said: “Seeing Canepa on the Desmosedicci was something else. He passed me down the back straight and normally when that happens you can hear it coming, getting closer and then it’s past.
“With this thing it was like an aeroplane suddenly landing on you. It made so much noise I thought my engine had fallen out and then suddenly this red blur of a Ducati comes flying past.”