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Waldmann quits Harris WCM project

Waldmann quits Harris WCM project

Waldmann quits Harris WCM project

The Harris WCM MotoGP effort suffered a major blow this week when veteran Grand Prix rider Ralf Waldmann decided that he no longer wished to take part in the project. The German rode the prototype machine in its first rollout tests at Mallory Park and Rockingham at the weekend, but later revealed to team boss Peter Clifford that he was not convinced he could adapt to a four-stroke at such a late stage in his career and that he would not be on the plane for a private test at Barcelona which was due to start today. Former GP racer Niall McKenzie came to the team´s rescue for the two-day session, but the search is on for a permanent replacement.

`Ralf told me that it was a lovely motorcycle and a lovely team, but that we needed a better rider than him to help develop it,´ said Clifford. `We went to Mallory for a track day but it rained and Ralf crashed, then we went to Rockingham but part of the track was closed - it would have been better suited to a 125. It just seems to be one piece of bad luck after another for us but the important thing is that we´re still here. Niall has helped the team out in the past and he was happy to lend a hand whilst we decide on a permanent alternative.´

Clifford refused to give anything away about possible replacements, but a firm candidate could be Alex Hoffmann, who has spent the winter testing Dunlop tyres for Kawasaki and who briefly rode for the Red Bull Yamaha WCM team as a replacement for Garry McCoy last season. Another likely candidate is Jay Vincent, who also replaced McCoy for one race in 2001.

MotoGP, 2003

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