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Vermeulen on podium pace in Turkey despite crash

Vermeulen on podium pace in Turkey despite crash

An eleventh place finish at the Grand Prix of Turkey on Sunday was a somewhat deceiving result for Chris Vermeulen, with the Australian one of the standout performers of the day.

An eleventh place finish at the Grand Prix of Turkey on Sunday was a somewhat deceiving result for Chris Vermeulen, with the Australian one of the standout performers of the day.

Vermeulen was involved in the first lap crash perpetrated by a collision between Olivier Jacque and Colin Edwards, but after picking up his damaged GSV-R800 the Rizla Suzuki rider lapped consistently faster than the podium takers on his way to a points finish.

Vermeulen set the fastest lap of the day on the penultimate lap at Istanbul Park and, with the 22 seconds lost in the incident deducted from the 20 seconds he finished behind second placed rider Toni Elias, it would not have been too far-fetched to imagine the 24 year old stepping onto the rostrum if he had not gone down on lap one.

He described the incident after the race, and listed the damage caused to his 800cc machine.

"I got a bit boxed in on the first lap and immediately got involved in a battle, but we soon straightened things out. I had just passed Alex Barros when another rider took out Edwards and Pedrosa right in front of me and I had nowhere to go but down. That was the worst part of the race, but luckily my bike was still running and lying on top of Pedrosa's. I grabbed the clutch, pulled my bike off his and re-joined the race," noted Vermeulen.

"My handlebar was bent and the fairing was broken but everything else seemed to be fine. I gave it a lap or two to see if everything was ok and then just got my head down and went for it. I started to chase after the other guys and do some fast, consistent laps. I kept it as smooth as I could and managed to get up to 11th. I know I set the fastest lap near the end so who knows what might have happened if I hadn't have crashed. We now need to take this forward to China, qualify well and make sure we don't get knocked off again!"

The fast times continued in testing yesterday, and Vermeulen topped the timesheets with a 1'53.1 lap on qualifiers in Turkey.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, GRAND PRIX OF TURKEY, Chris Vermeulen

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