CIA Landlord Insurance Honda completed a successful two-day test at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve today with the team happy overall with the progress made.
The fair weather testing at the 4.592km Portuguese circuit gave riders Tuuli and Irwin good track time to focus on settling in to the new team and the Honda CBR600RR and in Irwin’s case, a new circuit and Championship.
Niki Tuuli said: “The first day went really well, my first time on the bike and it felt really good. I think we did a good job and I am really happy with how the bike works, I think it fits me really well. I’ve been learning a lot of new things these two days and I’m just looking forward to the Jerez test and the first race of the season. I think we are going to do a good job. Thank you to the team.”
Andrew Irwin said: “It was a good first test I think. It was a lot to take in with the new bike and new track. Maybe the lap time at the end wasn’t as fast as I wanted but I definitely know there is more to come. I know what I need to do and I realise how much hard work needs to be done but I think it will come throughout the year. I’m not saying I’m going to win at Philip Island but as long as we keep improving and taking it step by step we shouldn’t be too far away.”
CIA Landlord Insurance Honda Team Manager, Simon Buckmaster said: “The test has gone really well. Niki settled into the bike well and felt comfortable quite quickly. We worked through the two days and now have a really good base setting for him and we go to the next test at Jerez in a confident way. He’s done a really good job.”
“It’s a learning curve for Andrew with everything being new to him but he progressed very well over the two days. We’ve done a lot of testing, a lot of mileage, both riders did approximately 160 laps each and we’ve done lots of good work on the bikes.”
“Congratulations to the team and riders on a successful test. We are in really good shape and looking forward to the first round at Philip Island in Australia where we will test again. It will be good for Andrew to go into his first World Supersport race having had a chance to learn the track before practice and qualifying.”