Suzuki to get engine upgrade

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Factory Suzuki duo John Hopkins and Chris Vermeulen will test a different engine spec immediately after the Turkish GP in Istanbul next month.

The Japanese factory is keen to build on an impressive start to the new 800cc MotoGP era, with John Hopkins claiming a brilliant fourth place finish in the season’s opening race in Qatar last weekend.

Rizla team boss Paul Denning said: “The most important thing is Suzuki doesn’t have any fundamental issues with the bike. Performance is good, handing is good and braking stability is good. Just as critically our durability seems just as good so that’s a nice position to be in. That’s good because it shows if we improve a little bit that means the riders will have confidence to go a little bit quicker. We could do with a little bit more acceleration and horsepower but no more so than Honda or Yamaha are looking for. I think if it was a Japanese championship, in terms of engine performance Suzuki would be looking as good as any of the others. We are really happy that we are not playing catch up in the horsepower stakes like in the past. We need a bit more to deal with Ducati but the factory has got a really good base. We’ll have new parts to test in Turkey which will just purely be a step up in overall engine performance.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt