John Kocin­ski Q&A

Classic Motorcycle Mechanics - - CLASSIC RIDE -

Jeff Ware: It has been said that this was the bike that turned Cagiva from also-rans to al­most-wins and if you didn’t take the ride in 1994 Cagiva would have pulled the pin. What is your take on that? John Kocin­ski: Yes, it is prob­a­bly true but a lot of my great­est mem­o­ries have been when I rode for Cagiva. It was a com­pany of great pas­sion. JW: When you think back on the V593 and par­tic­u­larly the wins you achieved how do you feel? JK: It is one of my great­est ac­com­plish­ments to win on a ma­chine that no one else other than Ed­die Law­son has won on. It was heart­break­ing when Cagiva could not con­tinue in 1995 be­cause we were so close to hav­ing a ma­chine that could win a World Cham­pi­onship. JW: How much of the work, in de­vel­op­ment terms, was al­ready done when you ar­rived at the team? JK: Ob­vi­ously, there had been work done, but it was far from com­plete. JW: What were the strengths and weak­nesses of the V593? JK: The strengths were the agility and steer­ing. The weak­ness was the nar­row power­band. JW: Was this mo­tor­cy­cle ca­pa­ble of win­ning the ti­tle? JK: Yes, most def­i­nitely. JW: Were you keen to stay on for the 1995 sea­son if the team had sur­vived? JK: Ab­so­lutely. I loved the team, the en­gi­neers, I had great me­chan­ics. It was just a mat­ter of mak­ing some small im­prove­ments to the power de­liv­ery and han­dling (Ed­i­tor’s note, Kocin­ski took a year’s sab­bat­i­cal, be­fore mov­ing to the Cagiva group’s fac­tory Du­cati squad in World Su­per­bikes for 1996 where he won races and was in con­tention for the ti­tle). JW: Daryl Beat­tie said that over­all he rates the bike pretty highly and that your­self and Ed­die Law­son proved that it was a rea­son­able mo­tor­cy­cle. But were you guys over-rid­ing to com­pen­sate for lack of per­for­mance or was the bike re­ally that good? JK: No mat­ter what ma­chine you ride there are al­ways is­sues. But def­i­nitely in 1994, the ma­chine was the best it had ever been. I think the re­sults say the same. JW: What did it for you with 500s – the chal­lenge, the ac­cel­er­a­tion, the adren­a­line or the fear? JK: That’s ex­actly what does it, I think, for ev­ery­one: the chal­lenge, the ac­cel­er­a­tion, the adren­a­line and fear. JW: Give us one word that sums up the Cagiva. JK: Pas­sion.

LEFT: Cagiva’s 1994 GP team of Kocin­ski and Doug Chan­dler with team-boss Giacomo Agos­tini.

BELOW: When he and the bike were on form, they were un­beat­able.

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