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Old 07-01-2002, 09:24 AM   #11
jmeyn
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Default Bad setup I think

KR claimed to be comfortable riding fast at tire testing after the last race. He sure didn't look it at Assen; his bike went all squirrely on entry braking. May be the wet/dry limited practice and qualifying left him with a poor setup. Sete Giberneaux looked really scary before he left the track.



One more race like this and I'll start to agree with the rest of the posts on this thread; Kenny has lost the fire.
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Old 07-01-2002, 09:32 AM   #12
rsheidler
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

Excellent point about the others speeding up rather than Roberts slowing. I think Rossi referred to the fact that Barros picked up the pace significantly and that he (Rossi) had to step it up to keep him in sight -- that probably was the same time that Kenny seemingly slowed. Still, with his very competitive qualifying times, I would have expected that he should have had an answer to them.



No question in my mind that Rossi is the best rider in racing now, and possibly the best ever (really hard to compare riders who did not race against each other on competitive equipment while both in their respective primes) -- I have followed him closely through 125, 250 and 500s. Probably the Honda is also the best bike, and almost certainly, they have the best support team. With such strength on all fronts, Yamaha and Suzuki (not to mention Aprilia, Ducati, Petronas et al) have one hell of a handicap.



Clearly Rossi is not going 100% from the start, but I don't think he has exactly been toying with the other riders either. When he got past Barros, he did pick up the pace, but Barros was able to respond a lot better than I thought he would -- his best laps of the race came at the end also. While I like and respect Barros, I have not considered him to be in the very top group for the past several years, so the fact that he was able to hang in there was pretty impressive.



Whether Roberts complaining was tactical or being a crybaby is an open question. I don't know him, have never met him, so my impression is from TV interviews and print/internet media interviews and commentary. My impression may be totally unfair. If so, however, I suggest that he needs a new PR advisor.
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Old 07-01-2002, 10:12 AM   #13
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

Yep he is great kid. The U.S. is blessed with some great riders Haydens, Bostroms, Edwards, Roberts', Bates, the list goes on and on. What is really nice about these guys is they are class acts. In these days of professional athletes getting into trouble with law etc, it is refreshing to see riders like these compete hard and with great sportsmanship.
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Old 07-01-2002, 10:18 AM   #14
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Default Re: Attendance figures

Yep I have friend from Northern MN and he agrees. You are on to something with your thought about the AMA needs to promote better. These riders are class acts, true athletes and true sportsman. The AMA needs to promote these guys and the exciting sport of motorcycle racing. Good post.
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Old 07-01-2002, 11:43 AM   #15
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Default Re: Attendance figures

A big part of this is the fact that ASSEN is in Western Europe not the US. Like it or not, the fact is that in the US, motorsports (with the possible exception of NASCAR) are somewhat of a niche sport -- with motorcycling especially so. Very few fans who are not motorcyclists. Sports media here do not consider motorsports to be real sports, and only cover NASCAR, Indy and the occassional spectacular crash. If it is not played with a ball (or puck), it ain't a real sport! In Europe, names like Schumacher, Rossi, Bostrom, Bayliss etc are comparably known to Michael Jordan and Shac here. Bicycle and ski racing are the same -- the press wouldn't report anything on the Tour de France if it were not for Armstrong, being an American with only one testicle being such a good human interest story.



I agree that the AMA could probably make racing more successful of a business, but probably at the detriment to its support of club racing. I am not a big fan of a lot of their recent decisions, but to a large extent, they can't win. Do they run the organization for their general membersip, the club racers who fill out most of the race field, the few (and shrinking) factory teams or for the fans? Whatever they do, they will get slammed.



Just as an aside, does anyone have last years attendence numbers for WSB at Laguna Seca? I am curious how they compare to the European events.



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Old 07-01-2002, 12:43 PM   #16
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Default So much for fearless predictions

Looks like Kato won't win the championship on the two stroke. Shows what I know...
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Old 07-01-2002, 04:15 PM   #17
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

I agree. The on bike video shows Rossi with an enormous power advantage over the two strokes. No doubt he did learn from Barros:- check out what Rossi said about Barros after the race.

The M1 seems to have enough power, based on how they go against Ukawa's bike.

It'd be nice to see the two Yamaha's up with Rossi, and also how good would it be to see the Pons team get four strokes ?!

Hopkins really is impressive - so few crashes on the 500, and fantastic results for someone so inexperienced and so young.

Does he have anyone mentoring him??



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Old 07-01-2002, 05:02 PM   #18
Andy
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

And the track looked really difficult to me. Weird curves -- it would take me a long time to get fast on that track (relatively speaking, of course). How did John learn it so fast? Raw talent, maybe?
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Old 07-01-2002, 08:36 PM   #19
stormcloud
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

Yes, its one of the longest on the tour and very difficult to learn.

Talented legends like Schwantz and Doohan have excelled here.

How Hopkins could do what he did is hard to explain beyond that PURE TALENT tag (Note I'm not American).
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Old 07-02-2002, 08:11 AM   #20
das
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Default Re: Assen GP race results

It's not so much that I think Rossi is toying with the other riders (every post-race interview, he starts by saying how tough the race was). It's just that whenever one of the other riders takes off and starts laying down fast laps, Rossi can always turn it up a notch and run with them. And then, when he's ready, he then turns it up yet another notch and leaves 'em for dead. Barros in Assen. Biaggi at Mugello. Checa at Catlunya. Ukawa in Japan (although Ukawa got the better of him due to Rossi's mistakes on the last lap, Rossi was clearly quicker).



It's not so much that he's purposely holding back to give a false sense of competition, per se, but so far he's always been able to turn it up beyond what anyone else can match.



I don't know Roberts either, I just got a different impression from the interviews and news stories that I've read over the years about his equipment complaints. For all I know, you may be right and I may be wrong; guilty of viewing it all through roberts-colored glasses.
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