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Shinya Nakano looks back on the 2002 season

Shinya Nakano looks back on the 2002 season

Shinya Nakano looks back on the 2002 season

Fifth place in my rookie season in 2001 gave me a good starting base for this season and I was hopeful of improving that result and taking my first MotoGP victory. The power difference between my two-stroke and the four-strokes ended any chance I had, although perhaps it was because I was still so intent on winning that I crashed so much in preseason. At in the first race Suzuka I also crashed and when I tried to put things right in Europe things didn´t go much better and I ended up getting involved in crashes with other riders.

At Sachsenring I qualified second fastest and finished fifth in the race. It was the one Grand Prix when I could really get close over the whole weekend and it wasn´t until Motegi that I felt in the right conditions to be able to ride like that again.

When we rode the M1 for the first time at Sepang we were more or less starting from scratch because we didn´t have much information about the bike, but we worked well on the set-up and I was able to beat Carlos Checa, who is a factory rider. Then at Valencia I was in sixth position throughout and I got the feeling there was light at the end of a long, dark tunnel.

I am very thankful to the Tech 3 team because I have had five great years with them. I came to Europe not knowing anything and they helped me a lot. I lived close to the team headquarters and we have had a great relationship. I appreciate the time and attention given to me by Herve Poncharal, and even though I heard of my future through the media, I am satisfied that I formed part of a great team.

I am currently in discussions with Yamaha and I think my future will be sorted out in the next two weeks.

MotoGP, 2002, Shinya Nakano

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