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Jay Vincent looks back on the one that got away

Jay Vincent looks back on the one that got away

Jay Vincent looks back on the one that got away

I´m still travelling up from Estoril to England and I must admit I am still gutted about what happened on Sunday. I keep running the race over in my mind and I can´t help but feel that if I didn´t crash there could have been a win on the cards for me and, if not, at least my first podium. I have come close a few times in the past but seem to have run out of luck just when I need it most, and I think yesterday was probably the best chance I have had so far of making that elusive first podium.

I felt really comfortable all the way through the race. The bike was moving around underneath me but I could feel what it was doing, we had a good wet setting and I was confident that once I got past Melandri I could pull away from him and start to attack the leaders. I did get past Melandri and I was starting to make up ground in third place when I lost the front end going into the final turn. I tried to pick it up but the exhaust was bent and one of the cylinders wasn´t breathing, so in the end I was struggling to get it back to the pit. I got caught out, and things would have been so different if I didn´t, but how many times do we say that in racing?

At least I know I gave it 110%. I could have cruised around and made sure of a top ten finish, but the opportunity was there for me and I would have kicked myself forever if I didn´t go for it. I had a feeling that it was going to be my day, but it wasn´t to be and there will be others. They say that rain is the great leveller in motorcycle racing and I am a great believer in that. I know I could be up there with people like Melandri and Nieto every week if I was on the same machinery, and hopefully next year I can get a competitive package together and prove that to be the case.

250cc, 2002, Grande Premio Marlboro de Portugal

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