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Up-and-down first day at home for Proton pair

Up-and-down first day at home for Proton pair

Jurgen van den Goorbergh: 14th Position, 2:08.547

Kurtis Roberts: Did Not Qualify

Proton Team KR rider Jurgen van den Goorbergh was 14th-fastest in today´s first timed qualifying session for Sunday´s Malaysian GP, losing places during the session due to some set-up changes that did not bear fruit, but which left him optimistic for tomorrow.

One-race team-mate Kurtis Roberts suffered a puzzling mechanical failure that triggered a heavy crash before he had completed his first lap of the afternoon, leaving him unqualified. In the morning free practice session, he had run trouble-free, placing 17th fastest in his first time on a 500cc GP bike.

Today´s first timed session was run in hot, sunny conditions. There is one more free session and one timed session tomorrow before the race on Sunday.

JURGEN VAN DEN GOORBERGH

´At the start of the session, I was up in the top five - but it was really hard to improve after that. We never did get much quicker. We tried some set-up changes that were in the wrong direction - and also as it got warmer we lost a bit of power. It´s not too bad, though. We have some other ideas for both the chassis and to improve the engine peformance in the heat, and in any case we can still go back to what we started with´.

KURTIS ROBERTS

´I´m not sure exactly what, but something went wrong with something, and I crashed at the last hairpin on my first lap. I wasn´t breaking the lap record or anything - it was my out lap, and I hadn´t even got my knee down yet. It was really weird. I´d never ridden on this track before, but in the morning I was feeling comfortable and it was going okay. We´ll try again tomorrow´.

KENNY ROBERTS - Team Owner

´Something seems to have caused Kurtis´s front wheel to lock - it may be a brake problem, but we need to look into it a bit deeper before we can be sure. We´d already changed engines on his bike 25 minutes before the session, so things weren´t the way they should have been. Jurgen was running well, but this heat affects us a bit. We´re looking at different settings tomorrow, and he should be fine´.

Tags:
500cc, 2001

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