Laverty: “I could have been even faster”

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In last weeks WSB test at Phillip Island Eugene Laverty topped the time sheets beating Max Biaggi, Leon Camier and Marco Melandri in the process.

His performance and progress since jumping on the factory Yamaha R1 has been impressive, but as the 23 year old Irishman revealed to MCN his best lap in Australia could have been even better.

Speaking to MCN he said: “During the three days we were working a lot on set-up and full race distance and I was riding the bike to save the tyre by standing it up and getting on the fat part of the tyre on the exits.

“On my final lap of the day I decided to see what I could do using the side of the tyre more. It was pretty much a perfect lap but there was a cyclone coming in from the sea and as I came to Lukey Heights the sky went black and I started to get a few rain spots on.

"I cruised over Lukey Heights and then when I saw it was ok I carried on with my lap but we could see from my data that I lost nearly 0.3s. When I saw that I’d still done a 1.31.5 I was pretty amazed.”

Although his test ended perfectly Laverty revealed that the start wasn’t so smooth as he continued to adapt to the 220+bhp WSB bike

“During the first ten laps of the test I couldn’t believe how hard it was.  There was a diagonal headwind down the straight so I was having to lean the bike left just to go in a straight line.

"There are some bumps near the end of the straight, which causes the bike to wheelie in sixth just before you get on the brakes and I have to admit that I wasn’t keen on that!”

Having spent the three days pushing Biaggi, Laverty overhauled the world champion on day three and left Australia in buoyant mood.

“The test has been exactly what I was looking for. I had positive tests at Magny Cours and Valencia but I wanted to have proper three days at it in Australia and it’s confirmed that things are looking good.”

For full story and insight into last weeks Phillip Island and Portimao WSB tests see MCN out Wednesday 8th December.

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Michael Guy

By Michael Guy

Sports Editor, former 250-racer and adventure rider