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Hodgson looking forward to Assen return

Hodgson looking forward to Assen return

Hodgson looking forward to Assen return

Neil Hodgson says he is looking forward to returning to familiar territory at Assen this weekend after a difficult start to the season on his return to premier-class Grand Prix racing.

Hodgson has been dogged by mechanical problems and injuries, made all the more palpable by the recent form of his improving team-mate Ruben Xaus, but is confident that progress made in a one-day test at Catalunya on Monday can help him find a quick set-up at the circuit where he clinched the World Superbike title just nine months ago.

"Ruben seems to be making progress but that hasn't been the case for me recently – I seemed to have hit a brick wall," commented Hodgson, who finished twelfth at the Spanish track. "The Catalunya race was good to gain information because the set-up for my bike was completely wrong but you need to be in a race situation to realise that and at least by going up against other riders I knew where we needed to improve and what I needed the bike to do.

"We worked at it a lot at the test but it was all worth it because I think we made a great step forward. We changed the weight distribution around a little bit and we tried a few different tyres as well.

"I set a good time, but the most important thing is that I was very comfortable in my riding and I think we'll be better off at the next race now. It was good to try things there instead of waiting until we get to Assen.

"It will definitely be an advantage to have ridden at Assen back in September. You know where the bumps are and things like that. Obviously I've been to most of the other tracks before too but when you haven't raced at them for a while it takes most of the weekend to get used to them again. At least at Assen I won't be wasting any time learning the place."

Tags:
MotoGP, 2004, GAULOISES TT ASSEN

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