Chris Vermeulen has travelled to Belgium to visit a 'knee specialist' in an effort to regain his fitness in time for the third World Superbike round at Valencia.

Former MotoGP rider Vermeulen has endured a disastrous start to his Kawasaki WSBK tenure after crashing heavily at Phillip Island and injuring his knee, an ailment that would go on to rule him out of competition in Portugal too.

Indeed, having discovered he was unable to bend his knee sufficiently during opening free practice at Portimao, Vermeulen immediately left for Belgium to be seen by a specialist popular with motorcyclists.

With just two weeks to go until the next round of the season in Spain, Vermeulen is hopeful he will be able to compete this time around.

"The problem is that I just could not bend my knee enough to sit properly on the bike. It was obvious that I could not ride at anything but around five seconds off the pace, and there is no point in that.

"So now I have gone to Belgium to get another medical opinion and I have an appointment with a knee specialist on race day, to see if there is anything that can be done to help me to be fit for Valencia. He has been recommended by a lot of motocross riders so I hope he can help the healing process along."

Vermeulen is expected to be replaced on the Kawasaki for testing at Valencia later this week.

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