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Huge crowd to celebrate four-stroke fiesta in Valencia

Huge crowd to celebrate four-stroke fiesta in Valencia

Huge crowd to celebrate four-stroke fiesta in Valencia

World Champion Valentino Rossi arrives in Valencia on the RC211V Honda this weekend leading an all-conquering four-stroke revolution which will once again provide the spark for a motorcycling fiesta on the Iberian peninsular. After some problems in the two previous races, the 23-year-old Italian was back to his best in the last round at Phillip Island in Australia where he fought off the challenge of the in-form Brazilian Alex Barros. Rossi´s team-mate Tohru Ukawa finished third and is just one point behind Max Biaggi, who is second in the championship, riding the Marlboro Yamaha M1.

Barros, making possibly his last appearance in the Honda Pons team, has been in superb form since being given the RCV Honda four-stroke. The veteran has finished on the podium in the last three races, including victory at Motegi, and will be desperate to finish the year with another win at the circuit where he finished second last year. His team-mate Loris Capirossi makes his last appearance on the NSR 500cc machine before beginning his Ducati career two days later with his first test on the new four-stroke in Valencia.

Norick Abe hopes to be fit to ride the M1 Yamaha after he missed his debut on the machine when he crashed during practice in Australia while Carlos Checa will be looking to impress in front of the home crowd after a disappointing run of results. Spaniard Sete Gibernau won a very emotional race for Suzuki last year while Frenchman Regis Laconi, who won the race three years ago, is fighting for his MotoGP future on the Aprilia.

The huge crowd set to flock to the Cheste venue on the outskirts of Valencia will witness the 500cc two-stroke machines bow out of competitive racing, after dominating the premier class of Grand Prix for almost 30 years. This final event of the 16-round 2002 MotoGP World Championship will be the last time the 500cc two-strokes take on the new generation of four-stroke machines that have dominated the proceedings since their introduction at the start of this year.

MotoGP, 2002, Gran Premio Marlboro de la Comunitat Valenciana

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