Crescent Suzuki ready to resume testing

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Crescent Suzuki team boss Jack Valentine has quashed rumours suggesting the Verwood-based team is about to shut up shop.

The rumours, the latest in a never-ending stream in these hard economic times, came from the WSB paddock at last weekend’s Portimao test, suggesting the team is about to close and new signing Sylvain Guintoli is in line to join the Stiggy Honda team, to replace injured Roberto Rolfo.

But Valentine said: “I’ve read stuff on website that we’re stopping and Sylvain is going to sign for Stiggy. It’s news to me.

"I’ve just been to Sylvain’s place to pick up his riding kit and take it down to the workshop, so it can be loaded into the truck for our next test at Calafat in February.

“Not only that, I’ve literally just paid for all our pre-season testing, including booking all the flights and tracks etc.”

Valentine isn’t about to deny that things are different for the Crescent team this year, since losing Rizla as their title sponsor – with the team slimmed down from two riders to one.

“It’s true we’ve trimmed things back, and we were always going to run just one rider if we could not secure a title sponsor,” he said.

“People say we’ve lost ‘factory’ support but we’ve still got a substantial spares budget from Suzuki Japan and already have 90% of it in the workshop.

"One thing that’s been my priority has been to maintain the best possible technical set-up. We’ve achieved that and we’re full steam ahead.”

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Gary Pinchin

By Gary Pinchin