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Emilio Alzamora returns to the scene of past glory in Motegi

Emilio Alzamora returns to the scene of past glory in Motegi

Emilio Alzamora returns to the scene of past glory in Motegi

As the only rider to have stepped onto the podium on the three occasions a Grand Prix has been held at Motegi, Emilio Alzamora will experience uniquely fond memories when he arrives at the Japanese circuit later this week. In 1999 the Spaniard finished third behind Azuma and Nakajoh on his way to the 125cc World Championship crown. One year later he took second in the same class behind his title successor Locatelli, a result he repeated last year in the 250 class after losing out to clear winner Harada.

So far this season the Honda rider has made the podium on just one occasion, when he finished third at Jerez behind Nieto and Rolfo. After missing the Brno race to undergo an arm-pump operation, he has returned to action with disappointing results over the past two races and lies ninth in the championship with 82 points.

´I would like to continue my run at this circuit and start the flyaway series with a real confidence booster,´ commented the 29 year old. `Things haven´t gone how we had hoped over the last couple of races, mainly because of the rain, but I feel a lot more comfortable on the bike since the operation. Portugal and Brazil went badly and I was limited to picking up as many points as possible. When it rains you have to be high on confidence in order to take maximum risks, but I didn´t have enough feeling to go fast in either race´.

The Spaniard is sure that he can find his best form in dry conditions, though, and is positive about the next few races. ´I want to get to the last race in Valencia with my confidence sky-high and give the Spanish fans something to cheer about because they have stuck by my side throughout a difficult season. Hopefully I can start in Motegi and keep a good run going at Sepang and Phillip Island. Fans pay good money to see good races, so I don´t intend to short change them.´

250cc, 2002

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