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Vermeulen: "Capirossi is a hero of mine"

Vermeulen: 'Capirossi is a hero of mine'

One of the elite riders to have won an 800cc MotoGP race, Rizla Suzuki's Chris Vermeulen joined countryman Casey Stoner as a successful Australian sophomore in 2007.

One of the elite riders to have won an 800cc MotoGP race, Rizla Suzuki's Chris Vermeulen joined countryman Casey Stoner as a successful Australian sophomore in 2007. The Rizla Suzuki rider is now embarking on a third year in the premier class, with a GSV-R machine now emblazoned with his lucky number seven and an idol alongside him in the garage in the form of Loris Capirossi.

"Teamwork can mean a way of working with the mechanics and the crew or, on another side, working with my team-mate. This year it's a new one –a hero of mine- Loris Capirossi," says Vermeulen on his new Italian counterpart.

"He's one of the best riders in the world; he's won Grands Prix in all classes. Loris is an aggressive rider who doesn't mind the bike sliding a lot and he's exciting to watch. It's exciting to be part of a team with him and let's hope that it goes well, but not too well because I want to beat him!"

Focusing on his own chances of title success in 2008, the Australian is well aware of the challenge that lies ahead. However, he also approaches the season with optimism and the confidence of a competitive machine on his side.

"It's going to be a tough season –it always is- it's MotoGP. We've got the best nineteen riders in the world on the best nineteen bikes, supported by the top tyre manufacturers, so it's very competitive," notes Vermeulen.

"Our goal is to go out there and win races and to try and become World Champions but, like I said, there are eighteen other riders trying to make my life difficult! Suzuki have made a big progression in the time that I've been in MotoGP, and we should look towards making it even better in the future.

"If I didn't believe in myself or in the team then I wouldn't be here. So I do think that we've got a chance at the title. There are a lot of other riders with a very good chance as well, so we're just going to give it our best shot."

An extensive interview with Vermeulen can be viewed on motogp.com.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, Chris Vermeulen, Rizla Suzuki MotoGP

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