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Jacque back behind the bubble with Moriwaki test

Jacque back behind the bubble with Moriwaki test

Jacque back behind the bubble with Moriwaki test

Former 250cc World Champion, Olivier Jacque, who chose to sit out the 2004 season when he was unable to find a team who would renew his MotoGP contract, returned to the track alongside his ex-colleagues as he took part in Monday's MotoGP test at the Brno circuit in the Czech Republic. A spectator to the action over the weekend, Jacque has been on the sidelines from competition himself for over nine months.

"I've focused all my efforts of my own team in the French Championship," said the Frenchman. "Team OJ came second in the championships in the 125 series and now we're going to take part in the last two races of the Spanish Championship in Valencia and Jerez.

"It's been a great satisfaction for me to be involved in the team full-time, but I do miss MotoGP. It's okay when you don't come to races and don't hear about it on the television, but when I set foot in the paddock I get the feeling I want to race again, and I still feel I have a lot to offer".

Jacque's test with the Honda V5-powered Moriwaki Dream Fighter MD211VF is initially just a one-off run, but undoubtedly it will not have gone unnoticed that in the day's tests, albeit around six hours of dry practice compared to one and a half over the race weekend, the ex-Yamaha rider set a time of 2'01.851, over three quarters of a second faster than Andrew Pitt's best lap of the weekend of 2'02.660, which was set by the current Moriwaki rider in Saturday's free practice session.

"Today's test has been really interesting, using the Honda engine for a start, which is really smooth, mixed with the tubular-steel style chassis which has a completely different feeling. I am obviously a little rusty and my arms and legs are hurting a bit now, but I don't think that physically I am too out of shape, although it's a little bit early to be talking about a comeback."

With Moriwaki Racing set to take one of the WCM team's slots at the Camel Japanese Grand Prix next month, which was not part of their original plan of wildcard appearances, and their contracted rider Andrew Pitt unable to take part due to his commitments to Yamaha's World Supersport efforts, it remains to be seen whether Jacque will be catapulted back into action a lot sooner than he might have imagined.

"The team called me up this summer to see if I was free to do this test, and I'm glad I came along because it has been very interesting to ride a bike with such good potential. I've only done some rallying so far this year with Renault, and some riding just with friends, so I don't know if I could race just yet.

"Anyway, that's all too early, because nothing has been said or offered to me at all. I have to say though, that I would love another chance to ride in MotoGP again." After his impressive debut on the machine, it may not be too long before Jacque's wish comes true.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2004, GAULOISES GRAND PRIX ČESKÉ REPUBLIKY

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