HEY, HAVE YOU HEARD THE LATEST?
After three days of testing, US Superbike champion Mat Mladin has now scored the fastest time of the Phillip Island test. Mladin is testing on the Australian land mass with Yamaha WSBK, Foggy Petronas and Alstare Suzuki including current and two-time WSBK champion Troy Corser.
At least one day remains in the multi-day test but it's unknown how many of the WSBK teams will continue to test.
Corser was the early—and much heralded—fast rider of the test, which led to much chest-thumping by the pro-WSBK crowd. Corser uses spec tire Pirellis while Mladin is on Dunlop tires. Corser has raced and ridden at Phillip Island for years while Mladin has not lapped the place since 2000 when he tested the RGV500 Suzuki GP bike.
Mladin suffered a huge, bike-bending crash on the first day of the test, high-siding at high speed in the "Hayshed" portion of the Phillip Island track. Hayshed is usually a fourth-gear or so corner and if you're going to make a short list of Places I Never Want To Highside At it may not head the list, but it's on there, in perpetuity.
Mladin's crew, headed by second-generation race mechanic Peter Doyle and the ever-present Reg O'Rourke, had to basically build him a new bike from spares. In the mean time, Mladin went to the hospital to get his arm stitched back together after the crash but it's, as Monty Python would say, "merely a flesh wound".