Suzuki Racing press release:
Team Alstare Brux riders Max Neukirchner and Yukio Kagayama are looking to improve their current World Superbike standings at this weekend’s fourth round at Assen in Holland, close to the team’s base in Liege.
Last year, Neukirchner took a superb podium in the first race and is hoping for more of the same this year. Assen has been a long-time favourite amongst riders, but recent changes have, in many minds, spoilt the fast flowing nature of the track.
“Assen is not the same as it used to be and the first section now is very different to what it was before. It is not a bad track, but it’s just not as fast and flowing as it used to be and so some of its appeal has gone. Last year, I took a third in the first race and a fifth in the second, so it was quite a good day for me – especially as I had broken my collarbone in Valencia in the previous round.
“This year’s championship is more competitive then last year, so it’s important to do well in practice and qualifying and then get a good grid position. I am hoping for a podium or two and can see no big reason why I cannot achieve this.”
“Assen is not so bad, but it was better before they made the changes to the first part. I like fast tracks with fast corners and Assen used to be one of my favourite tracks. There are still some good, fast corners, but you now have to ride the track in a different way because of the first section. This year is very tough and it is difficult to qualify well, but it is important to be on the front two rows of the grid for the races, otherwise you have a lot of work to do to get good results.”
Race 1: Bayliss (Aus-Ducati), 2 Checa (E-Honda), 3 Max Neukirchner (D-Suzuki Alstare), 4 Yukio Kagayama (J-Suzuki Alstare), 5 Corser (Aus-Yamaha), 6 Smrz (CZ-Ducati).
Race 2: 1 Bayliss, 2 Haga (J-Yamaha), 3 Checa, 4 Xaus (E-Ducati), 5 Max Neukirchner (D-Suzuki Alstare), 6 Yukio Kagayama (J-Suzuki Alstare).