Loris Capirossi heads to his home track of Misano in Italy for the San Marino and Rimini Riviera Grand Prix this weekend with hopes of a strong performance in front of his fellow countrymen.
Capirossi hails from Bologna, approximately 130kms from Misano, so can be assured of plenty of local support at the 4,226m circuit. He will be heading home in a confident mood after giving a strong race-day performance in Indianapolis last weekend and with the introduction of the new chassis and engine for the Rizla Suzuki GSV-R recently, Capirossi will be determined to improve on the seventh place he scored at Misano last year.
Chris Vermeulen also has high expectations for the forthcoming race. He was second at Misano two years ago and produced an equally impressive result there last year, after nearly high-siding early on and damaging his bike he pushed his way through the field to take fifth place.
The Misano World Circuit is located near Rimini on the Adriatic Riviera and will be hosting its third MotoGP event since motorcycle Grand Prix racing returned to the venue after a 14-year absence. The track features many first and second gear slower corners where overtaking is almost impossible and a long sweeping curve with two high speed right-handers that certainly make for exciting racing. It is a circuit where ultimate top-speed is not essential, but smooth and tidy riding certainly plays a part in mastering the layout.
Capirossi and Vermeulen will take to the track on Friday 4th September at 13.55hrs local time (11.55hrs GMT) for the first free practice session. Sunday’s 28-lap race is scheduled to get underway at 14.00hrs local time (12.00hrs GMT).
“I am really excited about going to Italy for my home GP. Misano is a beautiful place and I really like the circuit. I will have many friends and family there and for sure the Italian fans will certainly be giving me a lot of support. I have been fifth and seventh here in the last two years and would love to get on the podium this time – especially because it is in Italy – and will certainly be trying as hard as I can to achieve that. We made big steps with the chassis at Indianapolis and will have a good start point on Friday, we don’t know the full potential of it yet, but we will certainly be trying to find out in Misano!”
“I am looking forward to going to Misano as it is a track I enjoy a lot; also it has been really warm there recently so it will be good to get back to the hot weather. I was fast there last year, apart from a small mishap on the first lap and I was on the podium two years ago so it holds some good memories for me. It is a track that has suited the Suzuki well in the past and we have good experience with the bikes there, I am sure we’re going to roll the bikes out of the box with a good set-up on Friday and push for a front-running position all weekend.”