Catalunyan GP: Rizla Suzuki preview

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP looking to bounce back at Catalunya Rizla Suzuki MotoGP makes the short trip over the Mediterranean from Italy to the Catalan region of Spain for Sunday's Grand Prix at Montmelo near Barcelona. The team are in high...

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP looking to bounce back at Catalunya

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP makes the short trip over the Mediterranean from Italy to the Catalan region of Spain for Sunday's Grand Prix at Montmelo near Barcelona.

The team are in high spirits and looking to get back on the pace straight away following last weekend's slightly disappointing results at Mugello. The crew and mechanics made several improvements at last weekend's Grand Prix despite the mixed weather, and the recent test in France, that should hold them in good stead over the 4,727m Circuit de Catalunya.

Loris Capirossi is currently in sixth place in the riders' championship and will be looking to move into the top five at a circuit that he knows well, and one that he has tasted four-stroke success at by winning there in 2003.

Chris Vermeulen has performed strongly at Catalunya during his previous two Grand Prix visits and will be looking to get a good result to get his season back-on-track following a tough start for the 26-year-old Australian. Vermeulen had a long-race battle with new team-mate Capirossi at Barcelona last year, before the latter just out-dragged him on the final straight to deny Vermeulen a top-six finish.

The Circuit de Catalunya is situated near Granollers, less than an hour's drive from the centre of Barcelona. It is a modern circuit and has all the ingredients you could want for a fantastic Grand Prix event. A kilometre-long straight, tyre-smoking right-handers, elevation changes, an adrenalin-fuelled downhill section into a sharp right-hand bend and a huge grandstand along the start-finish straight filled to capacity with highly excited and colourful Spanish fans. It makes the event one of the most vibrant and highly anticipated on the Grand Prix calendar.

Rizla Suzuki MotoGP takes to the track on Friday for two free practice sessions. Saturday has another free session followed by an hour of qualifying in readiness for Sunday's 25-lap race. Round seven of the 2008 MotoGP World Championship gets underway at 14.00hrs local time (12.00hrs GMT) on Sunday 8th June.

Loris Capirossi:

"I cannot wait to get back on the track this weekend. Barcelona is a good circuit and I can go well there. The technicians have been working hard since Italy, but with a back-to-back race like this it doesn't give you much time to make many changes. We still need to make the bike more competitive to be up with the front guys consistently. I am riding as hard as I can and always giving 100% and I know Suzuki will get it right soon and we will challenge for podiums and wins when we get the package right."

Chris Vermeulen:

"I have only raced at Catalunya a couple of times, but I enjoy the track a lot. I live just up the road in Andorra so this also feels a bit like a home GP for me. We we're very disappointed after Mugello, but we will put that behind us and go for it from the start. We had some tyre problems in Italy so we will be working hard with Bridgestone this weekend to make sure we can get the best out of the bike and the tyres at Catalunya. I have got some circuits coming up that I really like and need to get my season going and get some better results, not just for me but the whole crew as they are working so hard and not getting the returns they deserve."

-credit: suzuki-racing.com

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Loris Capirossi , Chris Vermeulen