BACK IN THE HUNT AT VALENCIA
After the flyaway races in Australia and Qatar, Team Suzuki Alstare Brux are happy to be back in Europe and looking forward to round three of the World Superbike Championship at Valencia this weekend.
The team has been able to work in the familiar surroundings of their own workshops and get the GSX-R1000 race bikes ready for the demanding Ricardo Tormo Circuit.
The last round in Qatar was not one that will be viewed by either rider with affection, but both have put the two desert races at the back of their minds and are concentrating on getting back into contention this weekend.
"I had too many crashes in Qatar and I don't want that to happen again in Valencia. Last year in Valencia I was on the verge of taking my first ever WSBK victory until the very last corner of the very last lap. Then I was hit by Carlos Checa and crashed, breaking my collarbone in the process. As that happened in the first race, it meant that I also missed the second race, so it wasn't a good end to what had been a very good weekend up to that moment. Valencia is quite a technical circuit and one that is quite hard physically because you hardly get any chance to rest on a lap. But I like the track and my goal is to finish both races and get on the podium."
"The last round in Qatar was also not so good for me and so I want to do much better in Valencia. The track is not a difficult one, but it is not an easy one either because is quite tough on the body. It is the kind of track where you must be very fit and concentrate strongly every lap. I like it though and want to get my season back on track by being able to chase the podium again. I am not so sure about the new Superpole system, but it is the same for everybody and it is up to all of us to get on with it and make the best we can. The new practice schedule, with no practice on Friday mornings, is going to give our mechanics extra work, but I have confidence in my team and I'm sure that they will work hard and do a very good job."