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Preview – Grand Prix of Portugal.

But even the appalling weather couldn't stop Teka Suzuki's perfect start to the season; reigning world champion Steve Ramon taking his first ever premier-class victory during the single Spanish race, after Ken de Dycker had dominated the opening Valkenswaard round.

de Dycker, third at Bellpuig, leads Ramon by seven points heading into round three.

"Agueda is a track that I've ridden well at in the past and I hope I can continue to do well there with Suzuki this year," explained de Dycker. "Since the rain in Spain I've been back in Belgium training and riding in better weather to get ready for the race and I feel ready to do well."

"In the past, races in Portugal have not gone so well for me so Agueda isn't my favourite track, but it's one like another," added Ramon. "I know I can do well there this year and I'd like to close down Ken's lead in the championship too, but he's riding well at the moment and I know it won't be easy."

New Monster Yamaha signing David Philippaerts sits third in the early world championship standings after splitting the fuel-injected Suzuki team-mates to finish in second place last weekend.

Philippaerts's team-mate and pre-season title favourite Josh Coppins continues to recover fitness after his pre-season foot injury and, baring any further freak weather, will be looking for his first GP win of 2008 on Sunday.

Coppins has claimed solid points in the first three motos of the year but, although fourth in the standings, is already 23 points from de Dycker.

Billy Mackenzie is the lead Honda rider in fifth - and looks capable of victory - while Max Nagl leads the KTM challenge with sixth in the standings. Kevin Strijbos was another rider who started the 2008 season below full fitness, but is still the top Kawasaki rider, in seventh.

The MX2 class almost got to complete their full race schedule at Bellpuig, the red flags finally being waved one lap before the planned conclusion of the second race.

Davide Guarneri secured overall victory with 2-1 raced finishes, but KTM's Tyla Rattray remains in control of the world championship, despite finishing just 17th in the second moto.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Davide Guarneri on his way to MX2 victory in Spain.
The Mallory Park British Motocross Grand Prix track
Rui Goncalves (KTM).
Antonio Cairoli (Yamaha).
MX1 start.
The Bellpuig grand prix circuit.
Antonio Cairoli won his second MX2 world title at the 2007 Grand Prix of Northern Ireland.
Stefan Everts announces his participation in the Gotland Grand National enduro race.
MX1 action from the 2007 Grand Prix of Germany.
Max Nagl is announced as a factory KTM rider for the nest three years at the 2007 Grand Prix of Germany.
Agueda, home of the Portuguese Grand Prix.
Agueda, home of the Portuguese Grand Prix.
CMS/FIM president Dr. Wolfgang Srb, AMA Pro Racing director Steve Whitelock and Youthstream president Giuseppe Luongo discuss the future of motocross at the 2007 Grand Prix of Spain.
Ten times world motocross champion Stefan Everts on his way to victory in his very final grand prix, at Ernee, France, on September 17 2006.
Ten times world motocross champion Stefan Everts celebrates victory in his very final grand prix, at Ernee, France, on September 17 2006.
Ten times world motocross champion Stefan Everts (and friends) celebrate victory in his very final grand prix, at Ernee, France, on September 17 2006.
Ten times world champion Stefan Everts on his way to victory in his last ever Motocross grand prix, at Ernee, France on September 17, 2006.
Ten times world motocross champion Stefan Everts celebrates victory in his very final grand prix, at Ernee, France, on September 17 2006.

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