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Suzuki return to scene of 2006 success

Suzuki return to scene of 2006 success

Rizla Suzuki have happy memories of Catalunya, the scene of their first double top six finish of the four stroke MotoGP era, last year.

Rizla Suzuki have happy memories of Catalunya, the scene of their first double top six finish of the four stroke MotoGP era, last year. The 2006 race was an eventful one for both John Hopkins and Chris Vermeulen, who had some early scares at Montmelo.

Anglo-American Hopkins was involved in the first corner crash that left a number of riders on the injury list, but bravely got back onto the bike to take a phenomenal fourth place at the Spanish track. Vermeulen added to the drama at the restart, when he signalled to race direction that he had stalled his bike on the approach to the grid. He finished sixth after getting the bike started again and putting in a studied ride on the GSV-R.

Since then, the team have gone from strength to strength. This season alone they have taken one race win, an additional podium and several ten top ten finishes with their two talented riders. The move to 800cc has been a positive change for Paul Denning's squad, who are now coming into their own as a competitive team.

"I really enjoy Barcelona and I always seem to go well there," says Hopkins. "The track has a bit of everything for me and the 990cc bike performed well there, so I am sure the new 800cc also will – it's a huge step forward from last year's bike. I got a fourth there in 2006 and was very pleased with that, but I will certainly be planning to go a few steps higher than that this weekend! So far the season has been real good, but I know we have the package to make it even better!"

"I know the track quite well and have enjoyed it whenever I've been there," adds Vermeulen. "It is like a home GP for me really as I live in Andorra and Barcelona is just a short drive from my house – maybe I'll get a bit of extra Spanish support! I found Mugello last weekend pretty tough so it will be good to come to a track that I like and try to be competitive from the first session. I am looking for a good result this weekend as we definitely have the bike to do it, as both John and I have shown in recent weeks. We need to keep our good run going."

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, GRAN PREMI CINZANO DE CATALUNYA

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