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The Fugitive: Manuel Poggiali is hunted down by the 250 pack

The Fugitive: Manuel Poggiali is hunted down by the 250 pack

The Fugitive: Manuel Poggiali is hunted down by the 250 pack

Manuel Poggiali hung on to the 250cc World Championship lead after the sixth round of the season at Catalunya on Sunday, but his position is now more precarious than it has been all year. Three riders are hunting down the former 125cc World Champion, and with just seven points between them and the championship lead, Randy De Puniet, Fonsi Nieto and Toni Elías could all take control with victory at Assen next week. Poggiali´s weekend had progressed just as he would have liked, with front row times on Friday and Saturday and second place on the grid. However, it came to a sudden halt during the race when, after thirteen laps at the front of the pack, his engine seized and the MS Aprilia rider was forced to return to the pit garage.

`We had a mecanical problem which meant that I had no option but to retire,´ explicó Poggiali. `I had to try and keep the engine cool after the first few laps because it was getting harder to change gear,´ he said. `In the end it just stopped. It was a real shame because I could have got a good result here. In any case, that is racing – sometimes the rider makes mistakes, sometimes there is a problem with the bike. I am not complaining – next time will be better.´ Chief mechanic Rossano Brazzi confirmed the problem: `The engine seized but we don´t know why!´ he commented.

Tags:
250cc, 2003

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