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Proton Team KR - Crashes spoil Proton´s home weekend

Proton Team KR - Crashes spoil Proton´s home weekend

Jurgen van den Goorbergh: Did Not Start

Kurtis Roberts: Did Not Finish

Proton Team KR ended a bad weekend early at today´s Malaysian GP, when Kurtis Roberts crashed out of his first ever 500-class GP on the third of 21 laps of the 5.548km Sepang circuit.

Regular rider Jurgen van den Goorbergh had already withdrawn from the race on medical advice, after suffering concussion in a crash in the final qualifying session the day before.

Kurtis´s race crash came when the American rider was lying in 18th place, getting settled to start working on improving his position. Entering the track´s first corner for the third time, the front wheel tucked under, and he fell without injury.

The race was won by new 500cc World Champion Valentino Rossi.

There is one GP remaining - at Rio de Janeiro in two weeks - before the end of the 2001 season, the last in the classic 500cc class. From next year, the premier category will be open also to 990cc four-strokes.

KURTIS ROBERTS

´Everything seemed good for the first one-and-a-half laps, then I had some problem shifting and I went into Turn Four in too high a gear. That meant I lost touch with Aoki and Cardoso on one of the V4s. I was going fine again, and I went into Turn One the same way and the same speed I have all weekend, or maybe one or two km/h faster than the lap before, when the front tucked. If you do the same thing, then the bike should behave the same way, but it didn´t It´s down to a lack of set-up time. It could be a little because of the full tank, but it´s more that we just didn´t have a chance to get the bike right for me. I use a lot of front anyway, and this time it let go´.

KENNY ROBERTS - Team Owner

´He pushed the front, and that was the end of that. The reason is that we threw the whole thing together at the last moment, and we were really short of set-up time for various reasons, including the weather. We came here unprepared, and we´re leaving unprepared. You have to expect these things under those circumstances. At least Kurtis has ridden a GP 500 now, and he knows a bit more about it; and at least Jurgen got away without any serious injuries after a heavy crash´.

Tags:
500cc, 2001

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