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Capirossi facing fitness race

Capirossi facing fitness race

Capirossi facing fitness race

Loris Capirossi faces a race against time to be fit for the Marlboro Grand Prix of Qatar after suffering concussion and two bone fractures to his right foot. The Ducati rider collided with John Hopkins and caused a six-rider pile-up in the first corner of the race at Motegi on Sunday and admitted to having little recollection of the incident.

"I don't know what happened, I just found myself on the ground," said Capirossi in the Clinica Mobile afterwards. "It was a pity, but that's racing and these things can happen.

"This could have been an important race for us: we had gone well during qualifying and in the morning warm-up and were convinced we could have obtained a good result, instead it all came to an end at the first curve.

"This is a strange track and last year there was also a crash involving four or five riders, including Troy. I'm now just going to have to do well in the next race."

Ducati Marlboro Team director Livio Suppo also saw his other rider, Troy Bayliss, crash out and admitted things couldn't have gone much worse for his team.

"This could have been our best race of the season, but instead it was a day to forget" said Suppo. "During the warm-up Loris was third quickest and Troy was also in a good position. Unfortunately Loris was involved in a bad crash at the first curve and was unable to demonstrate all his potential.

"Troy, after starting in sixteenth position, was having an incredible race, but he crashed while in fifth place five laps from the end. In 2003 on this track we were struggling a lot, but this weekend's qualifying demonstrated how much the bike has progressed since last year - unfortunately we were unable to get a good result to confirm this progress".

MotoGP, 2004, CAMEL GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, Loris Capirossi

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