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Checa: "It was a weekend to forget"

Checa: 'It was a weekend to forget'

Checa: "It was a weekend to forget"

Carlos Checa said he was hoping to put events at last weekend's Camel Grand Prix of Japan behind him as quickly as possible after a disappointing performance which saw him finish in seventh place. Like his compatriot Sete Gibernau, Checa struggled with tyre problems all weekend and, despite setting the fastest time in the opening session on Friday morning, he was unable to reproduce his form when it really mattered.

"It was a weekend to forget - finishing in seventh place, over 30 seconds down on the winner was certainly not my objective," admitted Checa. "I got a good start and avoided the pile-up in the first corner. I was lucky, because many people did not.

"I saw Loris Capirossi's screen on the ground, then I touched with Sete. I was thinking about last year and to be involved in a crash at the same place would have been hard. In the race I could not keep the pace I wanted.

"I tried not to lose the group chasing Tamada and Rossi but it wasn't possible and I lost ground until I was overtaken by Bayliss and Barros. When Barros got past me I tried to follow him but I ran off track on the thirteenth lap. I pushed and pushed and in turn one I arrived a bit too fast and ran off the track. I lost eight seconds and then I knew the race was gone.

"The truth is I couldn't have tried harder and it's frustrating thinking back to Friday, when I was the fastest rider in the first free practice. That is no use if you can't follow it up with a good result and things didn't go well. Now we just have to analyse the situation and work to improve for Qatar."

MotoGP, 2004, CAMEL GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, Carlos Checa

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