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Locatelli: "A rider isn't finished at 30"

Locatelli: 'A rider isn't finished at 30'

Locatelli: "A rider isn't finished at 30"

Roberto Locatelli is having something of a renaissance riding for Team Toth, with whom he rode a spectacular race at the recent Commercialbank Grand Prix of Qatar to finish third.

"It was a dream. At the start of the weekend I thought that I could finish close to the top three. I was fast in the race and I was excited at the prospect of a fourth place finish, but I never expected a podium finish," said the Italian.

Locatelli looked back on a memorable race, in which he went from the back of the grid to the rostrum.

"I started well and incredibly I put myself at the front, but the wind pushed me wide on the corner and I went off the track. I couldn't believe it, my chance seemed to have gone up in smoke. I decided to carry on and got back on the bike. My ride was strong, at the same pace as the lead riders, even though overtaking was difficult because of the wind."

"A little way from the finish I caught up with Barbera, but he had more speed in his factory bike so I had to wait and hope that he made a mistake. On the final turn I tried to pass on the inside and we touched. I want to apologise because I was only trying to make the most of my opportunity. At the end of the race I spoke to him and I think he understood that I didn't intend to make a dangerous move."

Locatelli praised his team for their work, indicating that he expects to achieve similar results to that earned in Losail.

"I'm part of a small team, but one with a lot of excitement and passion. At the end of last year I was nearly left without a bike , and the Team Toth connection only came about because of my friendship with Imre Toth Jr. I accepted their offer and I have to say that it was a great choice. There's not many of us but the guys in the team work very hard. I need to thank Mr Toth and also Aprillia for their support." "I think that this proves that a rider isn't finished at 30. I'm still here and I can still say a lot for that, people should have more respect for riders such as myself that have given so much for motorcycling and are still able to get results."

250cc, 2006, Roberto Locatelli

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