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Superb seventh for Vermeulen in Turkey

Superb seventh for Vermeulen in Turkey

Superb seventh for Vermeulen in Turkey

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP scored its best finish of the season so far as Chris Vermeulen raced to seventh place at the Grand Prix of Turkey in Istanbul.

Pole-setter Vermeulen had a fantastic start to the race and led the first lap. As the race wore on and as rear tyre grip played a major outcome in the results, the rookie Australian held sixth place and only a last-minute overtaking manoeuvre from Loris Capirossi prevented Vermeulen from a higher placed finish.

Vermeulen and team-mate John Hopkins both had strong starts and Hopkins was comfortably placed in second position for a quarter of the race before tyre adhesion deteriorated so much on his Rizla Suzuki GSV-R that he was forced to enter the pits and change his rear tyre. After re-joining the race Hopkins battled hard to get back on terms with other riders to try and get some valuable points, but the distance was too great and he had to settle for 17th place.

John Hopkins:

"There's not much to say really! Basically I'm disappointed, I did everything I could. I got a good start and at the beginning the bike and the Bridgestones were working really well and I was happy following Sete Gibernau. At about lap six or seven the tyre started skidding going into corners and over the next few laps I started losing places - it got to a point where it was getting a bit dangerous. I pulled in and got a new tyre and just went out to try and get in the points. I know that within the bike, the tyres and myself, we are able and ready to run nearer the front and we need to get to a track where everything will come together."

Paul Denning – Team Manager:

"Firstly I would like to congratulate Suzuki for responding so positively and quickly to the situations that we suffered in Qatar. The GSV-R has worked well all weekend and today's hard race showed the potential that we know is there. Bridgestone suffered bad luck today but they will respond – of that there is no question.

MotoGP, 2006, GRAND PRIX OF TURKEY, Chris Vermeulen

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