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Ben Spies to replace Loris Capirossi in Donington MotoGP

Published: 11 June 2008

Updated: 24 November 2014

Reigning American superbike champion Ben Spies will make his long-anticipated MotoGP debut in the British GP at Donington Park on June 22.

Suzuki is expected to officially announce the deal later this week, but Spies will replace Capirossi, with MCN sources today confirming the 35-year-old would definitely miss the British GP.

The veteran Italian had further medical checks on the broken right hand today that he injured during last Sunday's Catalunya GP when Honda rookie Alex de Angelis wiped him out.

Suzuki had expected to confirm Japanese test rider Nobuatsu Aoki for Capirossi's factory GSV-R ride. In Aoki's testing contract, it says he is the number one replacement should Capirossi or Chris Vermeulen get injured, and he is already in Europe having tested at Catalunya on earlier this week.

But with Spies due to make his MotoGP debut in Laguna Seca next month, Suzuki believe it is an ideal opportunity to draft him in earlier.

Spies' next GSV-R appearance was supposed to be a tyre test session at the Indianapolis circuit on July 1, which is just under three weeks before Laguna Seca.

He will now fly to Europe to race at Donington Park, and he is also on standby for the Dutch GP at Assen on June 28. Capirossi though is understood to have told team boss Paul Denning that he will be fit to return to action in Holland.

The British GP chance is a great opportunity for Spies to put himself in the shop window for a permanent rider in 2009. He is desperate to switch, but his hopes of moving with Suzuki were deal a recent blow when Japanese bosses scrapped plans to run a third GSV-R next season.

Spies has approached Ducati about a ride and he has also been linked with the Tech 3 Yamaha team.

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