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Archive for March, 2011

Nikon Malaysia Celebrates its 10th Year Anniversary

31 Mar

To commemorate its 10th year Anniversary, Nikon Malaysia Sdn Bhd has officially launched a 4-day celebration starting from March 31st to April 3rd, 2011 at Hall 3 of Midvalley Exhibition Centre (MVEC).

The anniversary celebration includes plenty of fun and exciting activities for the four days such as a model shooting photo contest, free sensor cleaning service, a showcase of iconic Nikon cameras (old and new) and ans exhibition of photographic works by invited photographers. There will also be numerous photography talks by renowned guest speakers such as Manny Librodo, mizzstudio, Cede Prudente and many others.

David Ng, general manager of Nikon Malaysia said, “Our team is excited about the 10th year celebration as it signifies how we have grown tremendously over the past decade. We have enhanced our support to Nikon users throughout Malaysia with the introduction of Nikon Professional Support (NPS), Nikon Centre, Nikon Shop and our latest launch, the Nikon Club Malaysia for the general public. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank our users for making us the No: 1 brand for DSLR cameras in Malaysia for 6 consecutive years!”

The Nikon Club Malaysia is specifically designed to create an exclusive enclave for owners of Nikon products. With a wide rnage of activities provided by Nikon Club, members can enjoy new experiencs like never before, which goes withn owning a Nikon camera. This is where Nikon users and product owners in Malaysia can gather and be part of the exclusivity which Nikon Club offers. members will have the opportunity to exchange ideas and share their passion for photography with other users who understand and use Nikon’s range of products extensively. With Nikon Club, members can fully express their passion for photography and benefit from the services provided by Nikon Malaysia.

“The 10th Anniversary Celebration will help to focus attention on Nikon Malaysia’s accomplishments in photography. It also serves to underscore and address the continuing and increasing needs of photography enthusiasts who are keen to take quality photographs using our products,” added Masanobu Tsunoda, Managing Director for Nikon Malaysia and Singapore.

 
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Dani Pedrosa to undergo surgery after Jerez

31 Mar

After several medical tests by Dr. Eusebio Sala Planell, a specialist in vascular surgery, Dani Pedrosa has been diagnosed with intermittent compression of the subclavian artery, causing numbness and lack of strength in his left arm. Pedrosa, who underwent surgery last October to set a double fracture of his left collarbone after a crash in the Grand Prix of Japan, will undergo a new operation following his participation in the Grand Prix of Spain this weekend and will make the most of a month of relaxation offered by the calendar as a result of the postponement of the Grand Prix of Japan.

In the operation, the titanium plate and screws will be taken out of the collarbone in order to release the compression pressure. The Spanish rider will start rehabilitation immediately after and resume activity in Estoril for the Grand Prix of Portugal on May 1st.

Dani Pedrosa:

“It’s never nice to have an operation, but we’ve had a lot of time searching for an answer to the effects of this injury and I’m relaxed because I finally know what has happened. Now, we are in Jerez and I want to concentrate on the race, working with my team in best possible way to prepare the Grand Prix. This race is special, the crowd is always there to give you an extra point and I hope it helps me, as always. I like the track, I’ve had always good results here and I face the weekend with an open mind, trying to do my best in my current condition”.

 
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The Repsol Honda Team arrives in Jerez in fine form

31 Mar

This weekend the Repsol Honda Team faces the second round of the 2011 MotoGP World Championship aiming to repeat their strong start to the season in Qatar. The three factory team riders, Casey Stoner, Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso, first, third and fourth respectively in Losail, are motivated by the change of scene. From the desert and cold nights in Doha to the the warmth of Jerez, the gateway to the MotoGP World Championship in Europe.

On route to Jerez, Dani, Andrea and Casey stopped off in Puertollano, Sports European City of 2011, where they were hosted by main team sponsor Repsol. The three riders visited the refinery, the Museum City Hall and the Sports Pavilion, where a presentation of Repsol’s 2011 participation in Motorsports took place.

Casey Stoner lands in Jerez as championship leader and with the ambition to improve his feelings on this circuit. The Aussie climbed to a podium finish with third place in 2009 and now he k nows he has a good chance to be there again with his Honda RC212V. Dani Pedrosa is also very motivated. During his time in MotoGP, Dani has always been on the podium in Jerez, winning in 2008, being second in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010 and also having the circuit record from last year. The Spaniard will do everything possible to prevent the shoulder injury separating him from the top places.

Andrea Dovizioso, fourth in Qatar after an intense battle with Marco Simoncelli, aims to improve his record on this track as well, where he gained a third place finish in 2007 and in 2006 in the 250cc class.

The MotoGP Grand Prix of Spain 2011 starts on Friday with the first free practice from 10.10 am. The World Championship now slots into the usual schedule, with two free practice sessions on Friday, the third practice and qualifying on Saturday and warm up and the race, from 14.00, on Sunday.

Dani Pedrosa:

“This is the second time I visit Puertollano and it is very interesting to see how they manufacture elements such as fuel, lubricants or plastics you use in the races and in your everyday life away from the circuits. About this weekend, Jerez is always a very special race, where the support of the fans gives you an extra motivation that allows you to be even faster. I like the circuit and it has always been good for me, although last season I had a technical problem that prevented me from winning. We need to focus from the start, work as hard as we can on the bike’s set-up and the tyre choice and then we will see where we are. Regarding my shoulder, this week I had some more medical checks and tomorrow we will have the results and the doctors’ evaluations and recommendations”.

Andrea Dovizioso:

“I was very interesting to visit Puertollano, as only the experts who work here can explain in details how they make the different fuels or which materials are used for the tarmac, very technical questions I had never thought about before. Tonight we go to Jerez, to a race weekend I’m facing with a lot of motivation especially considering the good performance of this year package. Jerez is not an easy circuit for me, but I am confident I will be able to do a good job together with my team”.

Casey Stoner:

“I was surprised by the size of the Puertollano complex. I didn’t know a refinery could be so impressive. It was a nice experience to come here before the second round of the World Championship. In the last few years, I haven’t had very good results at Jerez, as I could be fast but in the race things didn’t always go my way. After the good start of this season, we have the chance to complete a positive weekend. The Championship has just started and we have a lot of work to do”.

 
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Nikon Corporation’s 3rd Notice on impact of the Earthquake in Japan

31 Mar

Nikon Press Release:

March 31, 2011 — The Nikon Group would express our deepest condolences to the victims of the earthquake and extend our profound sympathy and heartfelt concern to those individuals and families suffering from the disaster.

The following is an update regarding Nikon Corporation and its group manufacturing facilities.

  1. Safety of the employees
    As have previously informed, to our deepest regret, death of one employee of Sendai Nikon Corporation has been confirmed and safety of three employees is not yet confirmed in the area of Natori City, Miyagi Prefecture.
  2. Reopen of operation at the manufacturing facilities and outlook on the future production
    One of our own plants and seven of our manufacturing subsidiaries are located in the disastrous region of Miyagi Prefecture, Tochigi Prefecture and Ibaraki Prefecture *. All of these facilities have resumed their operation now with reopen by yesterday, March 30 of Sendai Nikon Corporation and Miyagi Nikon Precision Co., Ltd.

    It has been becoming clearer that we will be able to secure parts/components including their replacements through our investigation of the current conditions and possible measures to secure the procurement in our collaboration with our business partners. However, we have a concern that the situation may continue where our production cannot fully satisfy our customers’ requirement due to inability of full swing production worsened by the planned blackouts of electricity. While we will do our utmost effort to overcome such expected difficulties, we will be most grateful if our customers could understand such circumstances.

  3. Forecast of effect by the damage to our business performances
    We are continuing our endeavor to evaluate how the immediate damage by the disaster and planned blackouts of electricity will result in our group companies and business performances. We will announce our findings immediately when it is judged that there will be important change in our forecast.

* Locations of each plant and manufacturing subsidiaries

  • Mito Plant, Nikon Corporation : Mito, Ibaraki Pref.
  • Sendai Nikon Corporation : Natori, Miyagi Pref.
  • Miyagi Nikon Precision Co., Ltd. : Zao-machi, Katta-gun, Miyagi Pref.
  • Zao factory, Nikon-Trimble Co., Ltd. : Zao-machi, Katta-gun, Miyagi Pref.
  • Tochigi Nikon Corporation : Otawara, Tochigi Pref.
  • Tochigi Nikon Precision Co., Ltd. : Otawara, Tochigi Pref.
  • Kurobane Nikon Co., Ltd. : Otawara, Tochigi Pref.
  • Nasu Nikon Co., Ltd. : Nasukarasuyama, Tochigi Pref.
 
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Bridgestone MotoGP Preview – Round 2: Spain, Jerez

31 Mar

Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Medium, Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium

The Spanish Grand Prix at the Jerez circuit is next on the MotoGP calendar, representing the first European event of the 2011 season. Located near the southern Spanish city of Jerez de la Frontera, the Grand Prix is a classic event on the MotoGP calendar with huge crowds making the most of the Spanish sun to support their national heroes.

The weather in the region during the Grand Prix is usually fine with track temperatures reaching over 40 degrees Celsius, although this year the race is being held one month earlier than in 2010 at the beginning of April so we can expect cooler conditions. Tyre performance last year was good, as Dani Pedrosa set a new lap record, so compound selection remains unchanged this time around with the medium and hard front slicks and the soft and medium rears.

From Bridgestone’s perspective, the circuit has a balanced character and places equal demands on the left and right shoulders of the tyres. It comprises eight right-handed corners and five lefts but the nature of the corners generates equal temperature in both shoulders so asymmetric rear tyres are not required. In fact, the same medium compound front and rear slicks as used in Qatar two weeks ago will again be used in Jerez. Track temperature was around 22 degrees Celsius in Qatar and around 40 degrees is expected this weekend, which demonstrates the wide operating temperature range of Bridgestone’s slicks.

Jerez first hosted a motorcycle Grand Prix in 1987 and one has been held there every year since, although in 1988 it was classed as the Portuguese GP. Last year, to the delight of the Spanish fans the battle for victory was waged in the closing laps by Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo who passed Pedrosa for the lead on the final lap. The first free practice session gets underway at 10:10hrs local time on Friday 1 April.

Hiroshi Yamada – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department:

“Qatar gave us an idea of what to expect from this season, and based on what we saw there it will be a very hard-fought year of competition indeed, but it is still very early and there is scope for a lot to change in Jerez. Jorge and Dani had a spectacular battle for the lead in Spain last year and are both looking fast again, but Casey is also in his element at the moment so will be very fast too. Valentino and the Ducati Team also look to be heading in the right direction and for sure are working very hard behind the scenes, and I am sure they will really reap the benefits of this soon. The atmosphere at what is the first European race of the season is always spectacular with over 260,000 fans coming to the circuit last year. I was unable to fly from Japan to Qatar for the first Grand Prix because of travel restrictions so I am looking forward to Jerez even more as my first race of the year.”

Hirohide Hamashima – Director, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development:

“Jerez is a technical circuit with a mix of fast and slow corners. It is a good test circuit because of the diversity of the corner layout and this means that we require a tyre with a very balanced character to provide good handling from low speed to high and from flat corners to changes in elevation. The layout doesn’t generate particularly high loads for the front tyre’s centre section, and the left and right shoulders are used equally so asymmetric rear slicks are not required here. The surface is smooth, meaning not bumpy, which is easier for the tyre’s centre section but the grain of the tarmac is abrasive.

“The track temperature during the race weekend is historically high, although the race this year is run one month earlier than in 2010, but coupled with the abrasive surface it adds to the challenge of durability and wear although Jerez is not the most severe from a tyre point of view. Last year tyre performance was good and Dani set the first of eight new lap records achieved last year, so we have selected the same tyres this time around.”

Year: 2011
 
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Team Gresini Honda riders looking forward to Spanish MotoGP

30 Mar

The MotoGP World Championship returns to Europe following a period of preseason testing in Malaysia and Qatar as well as the opening round of the campaign at the Losail circuit. As is tradition it is the Spanish circuit of Jerez that welcomes the teams and riders ‘home’ and it is a fitting venue as over 200,000 turn out to give their support over the course of the weekend. After an excellent performance in Qatar Marco Simoncelli wants to cose that ever-decreasing gap to the podium positions. The Team San Carlo Honda Gresini rider struggled with his size at Losail, where it led to fuel consumption problems, but the team found a good solution for the race and he was able to put up a strong challenge at the front. The Italian described his performance in Qatar as his best as a MotoGP rider and it was confirmation that “Super Sic” is now a serious contender in the world’s elite category. Aoyama, on the other hand, was disappointed with his showing in Qatar but satisfied with his weekend as a whole and confident he can use the experience to put up a stronger challenge at Jerez.

Marco Simoncelli:

“I was happy and satisfied with the race in Qatar. It was my best performance in MotoGP lbut more than that I was able to run with the best in the category and finish close to the podium positions. We have started out on the right foot and that should mean we can do even better at Jerez. We have put the little problems we had in Qatar behind us and we have all improved together as a team since last year but we can’t think we have made it yet because it’s a long season. We know what we have to do to be even more competitive and that is key to the results. Jerez is one of my favourite tracks and I took my first win there in the 125cc class in 2004 so I am confident we can have a good race this weekend.”

Hiroshi Aoyama:

“Tenth place in Qatar was not the result we were looking for but I was pleased with the work we did over the course of the weekend together with the team. We have gathered a lot of data that will be useful to us in the future, starting at Jerez. My feeling with the team is really good and that is the most positive thing we took from Qatar. I am sure that things will go much better in Spain this weekend. At Losail I didn’t get a good start and I only found my pace in the second half of the race. Jerez will be another story because we have the potential now. Jerez is a difficult circuit but I like it a lot. My favourite memory there is my win in 2009, in 250, after a hard battle with Bautista and my current team-mate Simoncelli. That was really nice!”

Fausto Gresini:

“Qatar provided us with important confirmation that Simoncelli is already capable of fighting with the best riders in the world. Both he and the team have built on last year and together they can achieve great things. I am proud of all of them, for myself, for San Carlo and the other partners who have believed in this project. Honda have given us a competitive bike and the work we have done with it over the winter and during the Grand Prix of Qatar was splendid. Without the fuel problems related to his size Marco could have been even more incisive but overall we can’t complain because we know what we are capable of and how much progress we have made already. Simoncelli is ready to be on the podium and I am sure his objective will be completed soon. I am also happy with the good feeling already established between Team San Carlo Honda Gresini and Hiroshi Aoyama because other than the result at Losail it was a positive weekend and Hiroshi has more belief than ever in the potential of this bike. I am sure that from Jerez Aoyama can make up positions and be running alongside the best too. Jerez is a track that our team love, we have had a lot of great moments there in the past and we hope for more this weekend.”

 
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Yamaha MotoGP Previews Spanish GP of Jerez

30 Mar

This weekend will see the first European round of the 2011 MotoGP Championship as the paddock sets up at Jerez for the second race of the season. Huge crowds are expected to fill the natural amphitheatre to witness the premier class riders do battle on a 4.423km circuit whose signature includes numerous quick direction changes and few hard braking points. So far all MotoGP testing and action in 2011 has been overseas; winter testing in Malaysia was followed by a test and subsequent season opening race under the floodlights of the Losail International circuit in Qatar two weeks ago. Reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo kick started his title challenge with a stunning performance, taking both himself and his M1 to the limit to score a hard won second place finish on the podium and slot into second place in the championship standings ahead of the first of his home races this weekend.

The Mallorcan’s relationship with the Andalucian track in Jerez is a special one, providing him with race wins in both 2006 and 2007 on his way to two successive 250cc GP titles. His last visit in 2010 was no less spectacular; having caught and dispatched then teammate Valentino Rossi after a less than perfect start Lorenzo closed a 1.5 second gap to Dani Pedrosa in the last five laps to take the race lead and victory from the last corner.

Yamaha Factory Racing newcomer Ben Spies arrives in Jerez looking to take his first MotoGP points from the Spanish track. In 2010 the Texan performed well in qualifying at his first visit, learning the circuit quickly to qualify in eighth position for his second race in the championship. Unfortunately he was forced to retire after 20 laps so will be keen to build on his sixth position finish in Qatar two weeks ago with further points here. 

Jorge Lorenzo:

“I am ready to come back to Jerez. We started the Championship so well in Qatar and I believe it is a great moment to ride for my people and my Fan Club here in Spain. Last year the situation was quite similar and perhaps I got the best victory of my career, closing a big gap in the last few laps. We can’t make predictions for Sunday, but my crew and I will work as much as possible to be in front. Jerez is a special place for me, maybe the best track in the world. When I was only 15, the day right after my birthday, I raced for the first time in front of 100.000 people here.”

Ben Spies:

“I have unfinished business here at Jerez. I really enjoyed riding here last year and was disappointed not to be able to take some points from the race. Now I’m back with a full factory machine so I believe the outcome should be a little different! We have track knowledge from last year so we can focus straight away on getting the 2011 M1 set up and we’ll see what we can do. It’s my team mate’s home race so I’m expecting a great atmosphere.”

Wilco Zeelenberg:

“After a great first race we are actually quite keen to get to Jerez because we know Jorge has good speed here, especially compared to Casey. He won his first ever Spanish MotoGP race here last year so we can’t wait to see if we can fight like we did in Qatar, maybe even a little better! The results from the first race give us extra confidence, we know we can be fast and Jorge has the talent to fight with the best for the podium.”

Massimo Meregalli:

“I think Jerez can be a good circuit for Yamaha, after seeing what we achieved in Qatar we are going there with good optimism. It’s the home race for Jorge and a great victory for him here last year, when you ride in front of your fans it can give you an additional boost. Last year was unfortunate for Ben during the race but during the practice and qualifying the times weren’t so bad. For sure he knows the circuit so he can be immediately focused on finding the right set up and concentrating on a decent tyre choice. The fast corners of Jerez are good for us, our bike works well and we have always had good results here with the M1.”

 
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Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden Prepare for Spanish GP at Jerez

30 Mar

The Ducati Marlboro Team is preparing for battle at the Spanish Grand Prix, theseason’s first European race and one of the most characteristic and popular rounds of the entire championship, for fans and riders alike.

In addition to Troy Bayliss’ third place at Jerez in 2003, Ducati’s debut season in MotoGP, the team won at the circuit in 2006 with Loris Capirossi, while the squad’s sole Jerez podium of the 800cc era was with Casey Stoner, in 2009. Valentino Rossi has won on seven occasions at the circuit, five in MotoGP, and has climbed its podium a further three times, including last year. Nicky Hayden, meanwhile, made the podium in 2006 and finished in a solid fourth place last season.

VALENTINO ROSSI:

“Qatar, with its many hard corner entries and areas where we brake to the right, was difficult for my shoulder. We’ll see if Jerez is a little easier from that point of view, although I think I’ll still have to grit my teeth for a while. Since Qatar, I’ve continued working out in the gym to try and increase my strength and especially my endurance, but after Spain I’ll have almost a month to recuperate more fully, following the postponement of the Japanese Grand Prix. From a technical point of view, Jerez doesn’t seem to have been the most favorable track for Ducati, but I’ve always liked it a lot and we’ll definitely have to try and do better than we have until now. For the moment, we’ll continue working on the setup, using everything we learned in Qatar, where we found some good solutions for the race.”

NICKY HAYDEN:

“Jerez is a really unique race with a great track. It’s one of the highlights of the whole season, and because it’s the first European race, in some ways it almost feels like it’s the first race of the year all over again. It’s a track I’ve enjoyed in the past, and I definitely enjoy racing there. Round 1 in Qatar obviously didn’t go how we’d hoped, pretty much from the start of the weekend, so we need to just try and learn from that and go into Jerez and hopefully come out a lot stronger on Friday. We’ll just go back at ’em?that’s all I really know how to do. Hopefully we can get up closer to the sharp end and have a bit of fun. Jerez can be a really fund weekend if you’re in the mix. We don’t really have any miracle game plan or anything crazy. We’ll just go in there and try and get a good result.”

VITTORIANO GUARESCHI, Team Manager:

“I can’t wait to get back to the track for the next race, and to continue working on the GP11 in order to give Vale and Nicky a bike that’s as competitive as possible. For a variety of reasons, we haven’t been able to take full advantage of the winter tests, but the Qatar race weekend allowed us to collect important data and information, and I think that the team did some great work on the setup. It’s true that at least with the 800s, Jerez hasn’t been particularly good to us, but both Valentino and Nicky like it a lot and we’ll go there ready to give our best.”

 
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Leica X1 Firmware Update

29 Mar

Leica Press Release

Allendale, NJ (March 28, 2011) – Leica Camera, Inc. is pleased to announce a firmware update for its high-performance digital compact camera, the LEICA X1. Users wishing to benefit from the new offerings can download the firmware update from the Leica website and take advantage of new, improved features beginning Tuesday March 29, 2011.

The new X1 firmware offers the following features and benefits:

· Improved manual focusing, with the focus screen showing the image based on an open aperture
· More accurate manual focusing with finer steps, when scrolling slowly with the click wheel
· Two manual focusing speeds for more accurate and faster manual focus operation
· Manual focusing lock now available
· Enlarged manual focusing scale display
· Depth of field scale displayed in manual focusing mode
· Manual focus settings retained in memory when camera is switched off
· Improved autofocus speed in low light conditions and with low contrast subjects, in particular when shooting multiple images of the same subject
· ISO setting displayed in Auto ISO mode
· Improved JPEG image quality

For more information, please visit: http://us.leica-camera.com/photography/compact_cameras/x1

 
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Traffic Control During 2011 F1 Race Weekend

29 Mar

Anticipating a drastic increase in vehicle movement for the F1 race on April 10, traffic police will be introducing changes in the traffic flow movement around Sepang Circuit including introducing counter flow stretches to accommodate traffic for the LCCT sector. From 11am, an additional lane of six kilometers will be created specifically for traffic heading to LCCT; beginning from the runabout near the KLIA Mosque at Km 1.4 of Jalan Pekeliling via a counter-flow.

“The flow would then move back into its normal route at Km 7.1, which is at the traffic light junction after the circuit,” Sepang International Circuit announced in a statement today.

The counter-flow would then be reversed after 4.30pm to provide an additional lane in accommodating vehicles leaving the circuit after the race. Slotted as Round 2, the 2011 Formula 1 PETRONAS Malaysia Grand Prix is scheduled to start at 4pm and should finish by 5.30pm and will be followed by the podium ceremony. This will be followed by the 2011 Malaysia Grand Prix concert featuring Korean pop star, Rain.

In addition to the counter flow, another significant change to the traffic flow would be the part-closure of Jalan Salak Tinggi – Sepang, which is the main road leading to the F1 paddock. The stretch from the traffic light to the turn leading to the paddock entrance will be made as a one-way street for April 10. Traffic from Salak heading to LCCT and KLIA will need to detour left from entry of Parking PG3, which would take them to the traffic light leading to LCCT.

“There would be a total of 250 police personnel working during the event. I urged all road users to follow their instructions so that we could ensure traffic flow to be as smooth as possible,” said SIC Chief Executive Officer Dato Ahmad Razlan Ahmad Razali.

Parking would be on first come first serve basis and fans should not be too worry parking too far away for their allocated seats as there would shuttle buses moving around the circuit to ferry the spectators. In view of high traffic flow, Razlan advised spectators to use public transportation, adding that SIC was working closely with Skybus and ERL/Cityliner in providing the services.

 
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