Honda riders hit out at Phillip Island's bumps after practice
|By Matt Beer||Friday, October 14th 2011, 08:25 GMT|
The Honda riders were frustrated by the Phillip Island circuit's bumps during Australian Grand Prix free practice, with pacesetter Casey Stoner suggesting there was much more speed to come if the bike could handle the surface better.
Championship leader Stoner was fastest in both Friday sessions at his home track, but said it had been a very difficult day.
"I don't feel totally comfortable with the bike today and I'm sure we can improve the bike a lot," he said.
"The track is certainly a lot more bumpy than last year and I think it will be very difficult to get the bike feeling 100 per cent as the circuit is making things worse.
"In general we've found the Honda is better in certain aspects than what we had last year but with these bumps it's difficult to compare in other areas.
"We need to get the bike riding the bumps in the front a lot better, and also find some more rear grip. There is still a lot of work before we find the right race set-up and we know we can go a lot faster."
Stoner's team-mates Andrea Dovizioso and Dani Pedrosa were back in sixth and seventh in the combined times, with Dovizioso agreeing that the bumps were the big issue.
"The track has many more bumps than last year and it's difficult to see them, maybe because the surface is very dark, I don't know, but I've been struggling to get a good feeling with the front," he said.
"I decided to keep the hard tyre in front because it suits my riding style more, but with these bumps it's impossible to control the bike and when I switched to the soft front tyre I couldn't improve my time either."
Pedrosa shared their concerns, saying: "The track is very bumpy, much more than last year, which makes things even more difficult, there are many places where the wheels are off the ground."