VERMEULEN AND MUGGERIDGE AIMING FOR 'HOME' SUCCESS The 2005 World Superbike championship resumes this weekend at Assen in Holland, one of the most popular events on the SBK calendar and the home race for the Winston Ten Kate Honda team that is...
VERMEULEN AND MUGGERIDGE AIMING FOR 'HOME' SUCCESS
The 2005 World Superbike championship resumes this weekend at Assen in Holland, one of the most popular events on the SBK calendar and the home race for the Winston Ten Kate Honda team that is based just to the south of the historic racing venue.
Winston riders, Chris Vermeulen and Karl Muggeridge, are looking forward to putting in some strong performances over the weekend in front of some 900 team sponsors and guests. The Australian duo, currently lying in second and eleventh places in the series respectively, will be watched along with the rest of team in the Winston Ten Kate Honda garage from a specially- constructed viewing platform.
Ronald ten Kate - team manager:
"The home round for the team will also be like a home round for Chris and Karl since they have been with us for such a long time now. Chris won at Assen last year after an epic battle with James Toseland so, with our track knowledge, we'll be hoping at least for similar results this weekend. The track has been changed but the majority of the corners are the same so I don't think it will take the riders very long to get used to the new layout. They've seen the problems that the changes have created from the MotoGP race there earlier in the year so they'll know how to approach it."
Chris Vermeulen - championship position 2nd, 234 points:
"I like Assen and I've had some success there in the past with a win and a fourth in Superbike last year and pole position in Supersport in 2002 and 2003. The track's good but I'm a little worried about the changes they've made - I think it takes away some of the character of the place which has hosted world championship racing for such a long time. It should still be fast and flowing though, which suits my style and the bike's so I'm looking forward to going back there. We need to get the bike working a little better to beat Troy (Corser) but we all know that we have the potential. I don't see any reason why we shouldn't be going for eight wins from the remaining eight races but it's going to be tough to stop Troy with the points lead that he has. Assen is going to be a really important event for the team, who have a lot of guests coming over the weekend, so I'll be trying to put on a good show for everyone with some strong performances."
Karl Muggeridge - championship position 11th, 85 points:
"Although I haven't raced the Superbike there, I think Assen will suit the bike. It seems that the faster and more flowing the circuit, the better we can get the bike working. It's difficult to compare with Chris's results from last year but at least we should have a good base setting to start from - something we were lacking a little at the beginning of the season. I like all the circuits but I think I'm at last learning what we need to get the bike working properly. I was up there at Brands Hatch, making the kind of progress we've been trying to achieve all season. Starting from second on the grid was good but we're still learning about getting the bike to work over race distance. We certainly learned some in race one at Brands and softened it up a bit for race two but then I messed up and crashed on the second lap. My hand is a lot better after a three week rest though, and I'm in good shape, so looking forward to Assen and to putting in a couple of good results for the team."