Thursday, October 11, 2007

MotoGP: Barry Sheene livery for Vermeulen’s Suzuki in Australia

Chris Vermeulen will run this special livery on his bike at the Australian MotoGP

(Left) Vermeulen with his one-off Suzuki GSV-R, (centre) Barry Sheene's son, Freddie sitting on the bike and (right) Barry Sheene's original 1977 Suzuki RG500 XR22!

Rizla Suzuki rider, Chris Vermeulen will pay homage to his hero and mentor – Barry Sheene – at the upcoming Australian MotoGP at the Philip Island circuit this Sunday. Vermeulen’s GSV-R will sport a special, one-off paintjob that’s inspired by Barry Sheene’s mid-1970s Suzuki GP racebike. To go with this, Vermeulen will also wear a retro-style riding suit and helmet to match.

Thirty years ago: Sheene (bike no.7) riding his Suzuki RG500

The inimitable Barry Sheene in action...

It was Barry Sheene, 500cc motorcycle GP racing world champ in 1976 and 1977, who had encouraged Vermeulen to move from Australia to the UK and to pursue his dream of going motorcycle racing at the top level. Says Vermeulen, 'It’s is a great honour for me to ride the bike in a colour scheme inspired by my hero, Barry Sheene.'

'Barry did a lot to make sure I became a success when I arrived in the UK and I miss him a lot. I rode one of his XR14 Grand Prix bikes at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last year and that was certainly a privilege, but to ride my bike in the same livery is just awesome. Thanks to Suzuki and the team for letting this happen. I just hope that we can do credit to it...,' says Vermeulen. Well, we certainly wish you all the very best - hope you win the race mate!

Chris Vermeulen got to ride Barry's original Suzuki RG500 GP bike at the 2006 Goodwood FoS

Also see:
Stephanie McLean: "Barry was a cheeky little sod!"
2007 MotoGP race reports, features, interviews and hi-res wallpaper
Mind-blowing hi-res wallpaper from last five seasons of MotoGP!
Rizla pit girls: Hi-res wallpaper...
220bhp Aprilia V4 superbike in 2008?!
Carl Fogarty not coming back to WSBK after all...
Heavy Hitter: 2008 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14!
Scoop! First pics of 2012 MotoGP bikes!

External links:
Rossi to run on Bridgestone rubber in 2008?!
Cycle World: Moto Guzzi Griso V8 first ride
Honda CBX power, Ducati 916 style? Yes!
Supercharged Honda VFR800...

Yamaha will also run a special paint scheme on their bikes at the Australian MotoGP. Their livery pays homage to Abarth, the performance-car division of Fiat. Yamaha earlier ran special paintjobs on their bikes at Assen and Laguna Seca

The Stoner Express rolls on in the meanwhile, as two ex-world champs look on helplessly. The pit chicks couldn't care less though, they're happy as ever...

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