Roberts focuses on victory – no matter what he rides

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Former world champion Kenny Roberts says he doesn't care what kind of bike he rides as long as it gets him back to beating rivals Valentino Rossi and Max Biaggi in 2002.

The 28-year-old American is due to fly out to Japan this week for his first encounter with Suzuki's new four-stroke XRE0 along with team-mate Sete Gibernau at the factory's Ryuo test circuit.

And the 2000 world champion, who suffered a nightmare defence of his crown last season on the uncompetitive two-stroke RGV500, said: "I haven’t been speculating about the new bike. I don’t care if we’re racing four-strokes, two-strokes, or twins. I don’t care if we’re all on pink bikes – I just want to get back to beating Biaggi and Rossi, as I’ve done before"

"I’m not in racing to finish in the top ten, and the same thing is true of Suzuki. We all want to win. Next week, I get my first ride on the new bike but to be honest I haven’t been wondering about what it will be like, or thinking about the four-stroke too much. I’m focused on myself, and in putting in the time and effort to be capable of winning GPs. I want to be in the right frame of mind."

As well as the switch from the V4 500cc two-stroke engine to the powerful new fuel-injected V4 990cc four-stroke, Roberts will be changing from Michelin to Dunlop tyres.

" I’ve never raced a four-stroke, but I’ve always been sure that you’ll have the same people able to win races on either type of machine," said Roberts.

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff