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Naoki Matsudo picks up his pace before returning home

Naoki Matsudo picks up his pace before returning home

Naoki Matsudo picks up his pace before returning home

Naoki Matsudo, the only Japanese rider in the quarter-litre class this year, equalled his best result of the season at the Nelson Piquet circuit last weekend. The result comes just before returning back home for the thirteenth race of the season at the Twin Ring circuit, the Gauloises Pacific Grand Prix of Motegi, which will take place on the coming October 5th.

Over the last few years Matsudo has regularly shown his ability and loyalty on board the Yamaha machine, despite the bike not offering the same level of performance as the Aprilia or the Honda. In Rio he picked up his third fifth-place finish of the year, having do so previously in Le Mans and Catalunya. He lies in tenth position overall in the World Championship, top Yamaha rider and on 86 points. Neither of his Czech team-mates this season, Jaroslav Hules and now Lukas Pesek have been able to even dream about Matsudo's levels of success. The Japanese rider refuses to give in however, and knows that anything can happen on a race weekend, as he sums up Brazil before going back home to Japan.

`The first day I had problems finding a suitable set-up. It was hard to find the right combination over Rio's tricky surface. However on Friday we chose the race tyres, and that was a good decision in the end, because it helped us solve our suspension problems. That was the key to the race success. The next GP, in Motegi, will surely be a little harder than in Rio. However I will go all out for a top result there, because I want to get my best result of the year at home if possible´.

250cc, 2003

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