Rizla Suzuki MotoGP has travelled back to Europe for the fifth round of the MotoGP World Championship planning to carry on the impressive form from recent weeks.

John Hopkins qualified second and finished fourth – his best career result so far – at Shanghai last weekend and team-mate Chris Vermeulen took pole-position and a very creditable seventh in Turkey two weeks before that.

Now Rizla Suzuki MotoGP moves onto the Alice Grand Prix de France eager to follow up on its strong performances. The Le Mans circuit is one of the most famous motorsport venues in the world. The riders will race on the 4.1km long Bugatti Circuit, which shares a part of the front straight with the historic 24-hour track. The layout is of a stop-start nature with tight corners joined by straights and sporadic chicanes. It also includes the fastest first corner in the world, where riders will go through at speeds in excess of 290km/h.


Rizla Suzuki MotoGP will begin practice for the fifth round of the MotoGP World Championship on Friday morning followed by further practice sessions in the afternoon and on Saturday morning. The qualifying practice will be held on Saturday afternoon as both riders will attempt to get the best starting positions for the race on Sunday 21st May at 14.00hrs local time (12.00hrs GMT).


Paul Denning – Team Manager:

“It was really exciting to see John racing the Rizla Suzuki GSV-R at the front of last week’s race. It shows how far we have come in a short space of time and added to Chris’ performance in Turkey it has been a real bonus for all the team.

“We will be trying as hard as we can to make sure both the guys can be competitive this weekend. Chris is coming to Le Mans for the first time and will need to learn the track as quickly as possible to be on the pace. John had a good qualifying here last year and the Bridgestone tyres worked very well so that all points in our favour for this weekend.

“Shanghai showed that the bike has improved dramatically both in wet and dry conditions – John’s second place during qualifying in the dry and his third in the wet practice, added to his race performance proved that – but Le Mans is a track that requires high acceleration and we are under no illusions that we will have to work hard to find the best set-up for race day.”


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