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2009 season review: Loris Capirossi

2009 season review: Loris Capirossi

The veteran Italian’s 20th season of Grand Prix racing – his 12th in the premier class – was one of highs and lows.

Pre-season testing in 2009 had highlighted what seemed to be great potential in the 2009 GSV-R prototype, but the season that unfolded for Loris Capirossi aboard the bike was an inconsistent one.

A crash in the early part of the first race in Qatar was not the start rider or team wanted, and the closest Capirossi came to achieving a 100th career podium – which escaped him all season – was at Mugello.

Capirossi finished fifth in Italy having qualified in third place on the grid, and was just 3.2s behind race winner Casey Stoner as his bike showed signs of the competitiveness all at Rizla Suzuki had hoped for.

The result was repeated in the next race at Catalunya, where Capirossi held off Dani Pedrosa, but there was another crash at Laguna Seca at the halfway point of the season.

As the season progressed two more fifth places were achieved, as Brno saw Capirossi battle with Toni Elías and Andrea Dovizioso for a podium finish while San Marino involved a fight at the front.

However, a further DNF after a spill at Estoril made for a frustrating last section of the season for Capirossi, which was added to with relegation to the back of the grid at Phillip Island after Suzuki exceeded the maximum engine allocation since Brno. Ninth place was his final classification in the standings, and both Suzuki and Capirossi will be aiming for greater things next year.

MotoGP, 2009, Loris Capirossi

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