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Proton Team KR: Proton on Second row for Home GP

Proton Team KR: Proton on Second row for Home GP

Jurgen van den Goorbergh - Fifth Position, 1:32.593

Proton Team KR rider Jurgen van den Goorbergh will start tomorrow´s British GP from the second row of the grid after posting fifth-fastest time at the difficult Donington Park circuit outside Derby, only a short drive from the team´s factory at Banbury.It is the Dutch rider´s best-yet qualifying position in his first season on the lightweight three-cylinder Proton KR3, after a steady improvement over recent races. But he was still angry and disappointed. Until the final minutes of the last session, he had been fourth fastest, and in line for his first front-row start with the team. The session had been damp throughout, and positions were still determined by Friday´s times. Then there was a brief window when the track was dry enough for slick tyres - and one rider managed to slip in ahead of Jurgen to knock him down to lead the second row.The Donington Park circuit is more than just the home track for Proton Team KR. The complex and very technical corners take the emphasis away from raw horsepower, and favour the KR3´s accurate steering and good roadholding.Tomorrow´s race is the eighth of 16 rounds on the World Championship calendar.


I am really disappointed. Today just wasn´t our day. It was wet all session, then in the last five minutes there was a possibility to improve. I tried, but I made too many mistakes, and one other lap was spoiled by another rider. The second row is not bad, but to be knocked off the front row at the last minute by less than a tenth of a second is very irritating. Apart from that, things have been going quite well. I had a few problems this morning, but later I was going well. We have a good set-up, and if I can get a good start and not lose too many places off the line we can get a good result.


We´d have liked the front row, but we didn´t get it. As far as our machine development goes, I´m pleased - but we needed the weather to be better, or worse. Success for us is to get off the starting line well. We can go faster than some V4s, but it´s hard to overtake them - so every place on the grid is vital. I´m hoping that tomorrow it will either be hotter than hell, or raining. Either of those conditions would make us more competitive.

500cc, 2001

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