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Injury sidelines Hopkins again.

John Hopkins has more injury woes to contend with after hurting his rib in fall during the Czech Republic Grand Prix weekend, a problem that went on to force him out of the two-day test at Brno.

Hopkins has been at the behest of various problems this season but came to the latest round of MotoGP ready to put them behind him as the embarked on his comeback round having missed the last three races due to a leg injury.

However, while a couple of falls during practice don't appear to have aggravated the leg anymore, they have seemingly caused a further rib injury for the popular Anglo-American, forcing him to end his testing exercise after only a few laps.

As such, Olivier Jacque was called upon to complete a second day of testing aboard the Kawasaki Ninja, alongside Anthony West. Producing the ninth fastest lap of the day, 2.6secs behind pace setter Casey Stoner, the Frenchman was pleased with the progress made.

"The last two days have been very useful to us and we've gathered a lot of data. We firstly worked with our base chassis setting to see where we could make adjustments to improve the stability and balance of the machine. We also had a new swing-arm and some electronic components to test today, which have both brought interesting results.

“This track is quite grippy so it's difficult to see exactly where this puts us with regards to some of the other circuits, but I am confident that we've made many forward steps. We now need to spend time reviewing the data to assess fully everything we've evaluated in the last two days."

West meanwhile, whose career-best fifth place finish at Brno on Sunday appears to have not saved him the axe ahead of 2009, was the slowest of the 11 runners, but believes he has a more predictable bike beneath him now.

"I didn't test yesterday because Olivier was evaluating various different parts on my machine, however we have managed to achieve quite a lot during today's track time. We focused mainly on setting up the bike to suit a front tyre option that we've not used so much but has been put to good use by a few other Bridgestone riders recently.

Previously we've not been able to make this tyre work effectively, but with the changes in chassis set-up we've made, it is now a viable option for us to use. In the race this weekend I had to push hard every lap to be fast, but with the advances we've made at this test, the bike feels much more rideable. I'm now really looking forward to furthering our improvements next time out."

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Matt - Unregistered

August 20, 2008 6:40 PM

Hacking wasn't born in the US, I believe he's British. He only just recently got his US citizenship from what I can remember. At any rate, why sack Hopkins when he's outperformed West the entire season? He's missed several races due to injury and still has more points than West (37 to 33), yet you guys want to keep West instead? Hopkins has 1 more 0points/DNF than West as well, but still 4 points above him. Out of the 3 races in which they both received points, West only score more points than Hopkins in ONE of those races (Brno).

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