Motorcycling: Puig pulls the plug on racing

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The Independent Online
Bad results and injury have persuaded the 30-year-old grand prix rider Alberto Puig to retire from professional racing.

Puig, who began considering leaving the sport at the last world championship round in Australia, said yesterday in his native city of Barcelona in north-eastern Spain that retiring is the solution that best suits him.

"I feel all right, because I know that if I hadn't been injured I would have achieved greater things," Puig said.

Puig became the first Spanish rider to win a 500cc race in Spain, with victory in the 1995 Spanish Grand Prix in the southern city of Jerez.

However a string of injuries, particularly a serious accident on the Le Mans circuit in 1995, encouraged Puig to quit professional motorcycling.

In the training session in Le Mans he crashed into a straw bale at 186mph and badly damaged his leg.

Puig said that he would maintain links to the motorcycling world.