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Repsol YPF Honda

Repsol YPF Honda

An accident at the chaotic start of today´s Portuguese Grand Prix wiped out all the chances and hopes of the two Team Repsol YPF Honda riders. Starting from the first row of the grid, Tohru Ukawa ran off the track under brakes at the end of the straight, in order not to hit another rider that crossed his line, and couldn´t avoid a crash. Ukawa re-entered the race after the incident, but suffered another crash when the front brakes, that were damaged in the first incident, finally failed completely. Alex Crivillé was also affected by the first lap incident, running of the track into the gravel and losing all options to fight for one of the front positions. Mechanical problems forced him to call it quits in the end and to pull into the pit lane.

Tohru Ukawa Crash

´A race that was ruined in the first corner! I didn´t get a good start at all, and when I arrived at the end of the straight, another rider crossed my line when I hit the brakes. I went out into the gravel bed and crashed. After that, my only thought was to get back into the seat of my bike and continue to race, but I had especially bad luck as my brakes were broken in the crash, so when I pulled the brake lever arriving at the next corner, nothing happened, and I crashed again. Fortunately I didn´t get hurt, but this doesn´t mean that I´m not deeply disappointed. Tomorrow we´ll stay here to test and to continue our preparation for the races to come.´

Alex Crivillé Retired

´This was one of the worst races of the year. The start was accident-ridden, and without doing anything wrong myself, I got involved into the mess at the end of the straight. I don´t know exactly what happened, but someone hit me on the righthand side, and I went into the gravel. In this incident, I lost some eight seconds, and therefore all options to fight for the front positions. From this moment on, I decided to continue in order to take as many points as possible, but soon after that, the engine started to fail, and I had to retire. We still don´t know what went wrong. It´s normal that things like that happen here, because we arrive at 200 kph at a first-gear-corner, and even though just four riders fit through this turn, everybody tried to squeeze into it at the same time.´

Tags:
500cc, 2001

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