Historic Assen awaits Edwards and Crutchlow
The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team resumes the busiest period of the 2011 MotoGP World Championship calendar with a visit to the world famous Assen circuit in Holland this week.
The circuit is steeped in history and is the only venue to have hosted a World Championship round in every year since its inception in 1949, with the race also unique as it is traditionally staged on a Saturday.
American Colin Edwards heads to one of his favourite tracks with confidence sky high after he overcame atrocious conditions and a painful rib injury to claim a stunning rostrum at Silverstone's British Grand Prix earlier this month.
The 37-year-old's achievement was made even m ore remarkable considering it was only nine days after he broke his right collarbone in a practice crash for the Catalunya round. Edwards has been able to rest and recuperate at home in Texas, gaining vital strength in his upper body as he prepares for another physically demanding weekend. He expects to be in much better physical shape than Silverstone, but is still not 100 per cent recovered because of muscle damage around his right ribs.
Cal Crutchlow has worked tirelessly to get himself fit for action this weekend, the British rider showing outstanding courage and determination to be back with his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 crew less than two weeks after he broke his left collarbone in a heavy qualifying fall for his home race at Silverstone.
Since leaving the Royal Derby Hospital last Wednesday having undergone successful surgery to pin and plate the collarbone that was broken in five places, the 25-year-old has worked round the clock to get his shoulder healed quicker. Crutchlow will start practice on Thursday and he's determined to race in round seven of the 2011 MotoGP World Championship.
“I am really looking forward to Assen because I love the track. It is not the old Assen of a few years back, but there are still plenty of sections of the track that are awesome on a MotoGP bike. It's fair to say I've got some history at Assen. I got a podium in 2005 and 2008, but don't remind me what happened in 2006. I couldn't be more confident going to Assen though than I am now. The Silverstone result was fantastic for the whole Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team. It gave everybody a boost and it was great coming so quickly after my collarbone injury. I've had a lot of time relaxing and resting up with my family at home and the shoulder has onl y got stronger. It was like brand new in Silverstone, so I'm not worried about that at all. My right side is still hurting because I separated the muscles from my ribs, so I'm expecting a bit of discomfort from that. The rib injury has improved but I still don't think I'll have my maximum strength. I'll be looking for another strong result in Assen to build on the momentum gained from Silverstone.”
"Assen is another track that I know from my time in World Superbikes, but I will have to see how my shoulder is doing on the bike and go from there. It is Yamaha's 50th anniversary and I will do my best to be there and support them."