Jacque back to Kawasaki

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Former world champion Olivier Jacque has returned to Kawasaki and MotoGP full time for 2007, to ride alongside fellow countryman Randy de Puniet.

Puniet, 25, will stay with the team for his second year, stepping up to fill the team leader's position vacated by Shinya Nakano. Meanwhile Jacque returns following his role as a test rider in 2006, and wildcard GP riders in 2005.

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"I'm very happy to have been given this opportunity," said Jacque, "To be honest, after finishing second in Shanghai a year ago, I was expecting the call up last season. But the circumstances weren't right and the decision was made to go with a young head - but now the old head is back."

"I'm pleased Kawasaki view me as the person to help develop their new 800cc Ninja ZX-RR. It's good to have the hard work we've done in developing this season's bike into a competitive package recognised with a full-time ride for the factory team. What feels strange for me is that, despite so many years in Grand Prix racing, this will be the first full factory team I have ridden for since winning the 250cc world title in 2000.

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MCN Staff

By MCN Staff