Re: What's wrong with KR JR & his bike
Well, if you check out any of the previous results from this year, you'll see that his bike is clearly down on top speed compared to the Hondas and Yamahas. Check out http://www.motogp.com/
choose an event from the list, choose the 500cc race results, and then click on Event Maximum Speed to see each rider's top speed at that circuit (in the race, qualifying or warm up). In the Portugese GP at Estoril, he was 10.4km/h down on top speed compared to Capirossi.
This top speed deficeit was there last year too, but not by quite as much.
Most of the complaints about the bike seem to be related to the tires, though. Kenny has previously stated, and the numbers seem to bear this out, that his tires are only good for the first 5-10 laps or so, and then he cannot maintain the pace. Based on the fact that he frequently runs at the front early on, I'm guessing that it's not a matter of him not being skilled enough to circulate the track at a competitive speed.
Whether it's the tires themselves or the power delivery of the bike, or the bike's chassis/suspension setup, or whatever, tire life seems to be the major issue.
Of course, in a wet race, the tire situation is changed dramatically, and is often a big gamble. At Valencia, Suzuki gambled correctly. Hence the best-of-the-year-by-far results from both top Suzuki riders.