Team Suzuki Press Office – May 21. FIXI Crescent Suzuki is in England this weekend for the European round of the eni FIM Superbike World Championship at Donington Park; an event that the team considers its first ‘home’ race of the season.
With the team’s title sponsors, FIXI, based in London and the squad’s operational headquarters at Crescent in southern England, plus the majority of the squad, including racer Leon Camier, hailing from the UK, the Donington event is a real homecoming for the Suzuki WSBK outfit.
Camier is hoping to be fully fit at Donington following the knee injury he sustained earlier in the season that has seen him compete at below full-strength at the last two events. He has worked hard on his fitness and will be heading to his home race in a positive and invigorated frame of mind following a tough training regime to build his race fitness and stamina.
Jules Cluzel is returning to a circuit that holds fond memories for him from last season. The Frenchman immediately made himself at home around the Donington layout, as he took Pole Position in the Supersport class and followed that with third in the race. His ability to quickly-learn circuits on the Yoshimura-powered GSX-R will again be put to the test as he continues with his impressive rookie season in the Superbike arena. He is still suffering from the after-effects of the accident at Monza that cost him the nail on his little finger, but he is determined to not let that hinder him this weekend.
The 4,023m-long Donington Park circuit is round five of this season’s championship, set in a natural amphitheatre in the Derbyshire/ Leicestershire countryside; and has many exciting corners set over its elevation changes. It is one or the riders’ favourite circuits of the year and not many tracks have a sight to compare with the entire field roaring down Craner Curves on the first lap – possibly one of the best stretches of asphalt on the entire calendar.
FIXI Crescent Suzuki will start the weekend with practice sessions on Friday and Saturday, which will hopefully see Camier and Cluzel advance to the Superpole on Saturday afternoon where the pair will be challenging for the best grid positions for Sunday’s two 23-lap races.
“I am really looking forward to Donington Park; it’s great to race at home and I’m sure we’ll have a big crowd there to cheer us on. I have been working hard to get fully fit and now hope my injuries allow me to push to 100% and get the FIXI Crescent Suzuki up to where we need to be. The GSX-R’s engine performance has improved massively; we now need to focus on getting out of the slow corners cleanly and putting the power to the ground! Donington is one of those tracks where outright speed is not a necessity, so that should be an advantage to us.”
“Donington is a really important race for the whole team, it is a totally English squad, with the exception of me and another guy – so I guess I will need to be a ‘Rosbif’ for the weekend! My finger is still quite sore and if I put gloves on, it is painful, but it is only a finger and it won’t stop me from riding. I was really disappointed after Monza because I think we had the chance of a good result in both races, but some bad luck and I think an unfair decision for the ride-through cost us. We have to put that behind us now and start working hard again at Donington; it is a track I really like and one that I went very well at last season. I know some of the guys have huge knowledge of the place – including Leon – so it won’t be easy, but I will try to learn as quickly as possible and hopefully give all our sponsors and fans something to cheer about on Sunday.”