News 1 Jun 2009

ASBK: Curtain and Attard podium in top weekend for KRT

Kawasaki Racing Team PR:

After qualifying on the front row of the grid for round 3a of the Australian Superbike Championships at Queensland Raceway, both Kevin Curtain (Superbike) and Ben Attard (Supersport) raced their Ninja motorcycles to the podium throughout the weekend’s double header event. Showing that the ongoing testing and development of the Ninja ZX-10R is paying dividends, Curtain went 5-6 in Saturday’s round 3a then won Superpole for Sunday’s round 3b and came away with a double podium going 3-3. Ben Attard found the podium on both days going 3-5 in Saturday’s 3a and 12-3 in Sunday’s round 3b.

Kevin Curtain didn’t enjoy the start to the 2009 ASBK series that he was hoping for after visor fog forced an early retirement and a DNF at the first round at Phillip Island. Putting that well and truly behind him, Kevin has found a great set up on the Ninja ZX-10R that is working hand in hand with his international winning style to get the KRT rider on the podium. To win Superpole for Sunday’s 3b shows that KRT is making inroads on the blisteringly fast Ninja ZX-10R and getting it to the stage where Kevin can race all the way to the podium. Kevin’s great results at rounds 3a and 3b push him forward 8 places in the Championship to 8th place. Kevin finished round 3a in 6th place and 3b in 4th place.

Singing praises about his Ninja ZX-10R race bike, Kevin says, “Before I joined KRT, I heard many mixed reports about the ZX-10R. I can say that the bike is much better than what I expected. It is a great bike! I did have some set up issues when I first got on it however it has only gotten better with every single race and practice session. The Ninja ZX-10R has never taken a backward step. All credit must go to the team. This weekend it was balanced superbly, we were getting a lot of traction out of corners and it’s no slower than any other bike on the straight. The set up that we found at QLD will be very close to what is required to find the podium at Eastern Creek.”

Ben Attard still sits in 3rd place in the Australian Supersport Championships after riding his Ninja ZX-6R to the podium on both days of racing. A bittersweet weekend of racing for Ben saw the talented KRT rider on the podium for two of his races, however pushing to the limits in his bid to cross the line in 1st place resulted in Ben running off the track in his other two races, which prevented him from furthering his overall standing in the competition. Ben finished round 3a in 4th place and 3b in 8th place.

Ben says, “These results are definitely not what I had planned. It was great to finish two of the races on the podium but there’s room for improvement. We’re not giving up. We’ll make it right, it’s just taking longer than we’d like.”

“The team is working tirelessly to make things right. The ZX-6R is a very good bike, however we’re yet to find our happiest set up but we’re on our way.”

KRT Manager Dave Cullen says, “Many were impressed with the speed of Kevin’s ZX-10R and winning Superpole for round 3b was a brilliant effort. We were losing a bit of time under brakes during Saturday’s 3a round so we made some changes that paid off as Kevin came back out and was quickest on track with a very fast lap in qualifying which nobody bettered. It’s a combination of Kev’s commitment and confidence that was able to get the ZX-10R to the front of the field. It’s been a constant ongoing test & development program that is paying dividends”

“Ben came away with a couple of good podium finishes which was great. It’s a shame we weren’t a little more consistent. We put together a couple of good races but the chances missed are unfortunate. The good results indicate that Ben and the ZX-6R are very, very competitive in this Championship. We are looking to collect race wins in the upcoming rounds.”

“We’ve been working towards these results for a while and the podium finishes are very rewarding. The team is all working very hard and we’re really looking forward to the next round at our home track, Eastern Creek, where we will be shooting for more podiums. “

KRT will be out in force at Eastern Creek Raceway in Sydney for the 4th round of the Australian Superbike Championships on August 7-9.