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Roberts hails positive step after satisfying weekend in Le Mans

Roberts hails positive step after satisfying weekend in Le Mans

Roberts hails positive step after satisfying weekend in Le Mans

Team Telefónica Movistar Suzuki´s 4-stroke project continues to make progress following a productive weekend at the Polini Grand Prix de France just passed. After claiming their first official World Championship points in Jerez two weeks back, when Kenny Roberts Jr came in eighth and Sete Gibernau ninth, the former World Champion produced his best result since Valencia last year by taking fifth place in the rain shortened race at the Bugatti circuit in Le Mans.

Since he became 500cc World Champion in the 2000 season Roberts has suffered a frustrating time, especially last year when he finished a disappointing eleventh overall when trying to defend his crown. The American was buoyed by Suzuki´s decision to bring forward their 4-stroke GSV-R project to compete this year, and although he has failed to make any real impact on the championship so far this term, the ever-developing bike has certainly showed some positive signs.

In Le Mans though, the 29 year-old not only secured his best result of this season, but by coming home fifth claimed only his second top five finish in his last 21 Grand Prix outings, dating back to Motegi in 2000. ´It feels good to get the best result yet, and I know that at this early stage of development I got the best possible out of the bike. I know I am capable of better, and with the improvements we are achieving all the time with the machine, I know we will do better in the future. We need to get both the chassis and engine to a higher level, but the bike is still very new and it was a good result for the team´, he commented.

Roberts went on to add of Sunday´s race, ´It all felt pretty good in the early laps, and I was able to move up through the field. The conditions were pretty touch and go, and there were times when they could have stopped the race. I was sliding pretty good. But the race organisers made absolutely the right decision to stop the race when they did.´

MotoGP, 2002, Polini Grand Prix de France, Kurtis Roberts

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