US MotoGP: Vermeulen signs new factory Suzuki deal

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Aussie Chris Vermeulen has signed a new contract with Suzuki’s factory MotoGP squad.

The 24-year-old will stay on board a GSV-R for 2008 with an option for 2009 having accepted a formal offer he received at the German GP in the Sachsenring earlier this month.

He confirmed the deal shortly after finishing second in today’s American MotoGP race in Laguna Seca.Having lost American John Hopkins to rivals Kawasaki, Suzuki moved quickly to capture Vermeulen as he too was locked in negotiations with Kawasaki and Yamaha's satellite team run by Tech 3.

Vermeulen joined Suzuki at the start of the 2006 season having been lured away from Honda’s Ten Kate World Superbike squad.

He won a rain-soaked French GP in Le Mans back in May to become the first Suzuki rider to claim a premier class victory in the new four-stroke era.

Vermeulen is expected to be joined by Loris Capirossi in 2008.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt