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Akiyoshi to ride at Jerez as both test rider and wildcard

Akiyoshi to ride at Jerez as both test rider and wildcard

As John Hopkins looks increasingly likely to miss out on riding at Jerez this week, Rizla Suzuki will place the final stage of their 800cc preseason development in the hands of regular rider Chris Vermeulen and Japanese test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi.

As John Hopkins looks increasingly likely to miss out on riding at Jerez this week, Rizla Suzuki will place the final stage of their 800cc preseason development in the hands of regular rider Chris Vermeulen and Japanese test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi.

For the latter, it is also a chance to prepare himself for his debut race at the Spanish circuit next month, with Suzuki confirming that they have set aside a place for him as a wild card.

"I am very much looking forward to testing at Jerez. I was always coming here so I could learn the track for next month's race. It is now even more important for me to be here as John has some problems. I want to do very well and will give Rizla Suzuki MotoGP my best performance," commented Akiyoshi.

Vermeulen, who had a positive test at Jerez last year, is looking positively at the final preseason run-out.

"This is the last chance that we have to make any significant improvements to the bike in a test environment. The bike is pretty good at the moment but we are always looking for a bit more. It will be good to get some competitive action with Sunday's timed session. I know it's not a race but it is nice to have that extra edge. It's such a shame that John might not be fit, but it is more important to him and the team to make sure he's 100% for Qatar, I know he'll be helping us as much as he can and wishing he was out there."

The three-day test will also see Rizla Suzuki officially launch the new GSV-R800 on Thursday evening in front of an invited audience.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007

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