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Rossi turns to western stronghold

Rossi turns to western stronghold

Rossi turns to western stronghold

Valentino Rossi takes his MotoGP World Championship lead to the west coast of Europe this weekend and a circuit where he remains unbeaten since Garry McCoy's famous victory in the 2000 season.

After three years of dominance on a Honda, Rossi will try to hand Yamaha their first win at the Portuguese track since the Australian's surprise success, and outweigh a win-to-race ratio which stands at five from the opening ten rounds.

Of course, his success rate only dropped to 50% after Sete Gibernau's victory in the last race in Brno, but it was another valuable learning experience for Rossi as he continues his education with the YZR-M1.

"Things were going well in Brno until we had some rear tyre problems during the race, but I think that Estoril should be a circuit we can do well at," said Rossi, who holds a 17-point advantage over Gibernau at the top of the standings. "Having said that, it seems each time we go to a circuit we think we can do well at the opposite happens, and vice versa.

"It's my first time there with the M1 so, like Brno, it will mean using every available moment to work hard on set-up. Honda was very strong in Brno and I'm sure the race will be tight again. The points gap has reduced so it's even more pressure to hold onto a points advantage in Estoril.

"The Estoril track is full of bumps and we have had some problems with this bike on bumps so I hope we can find a good direction early on during the weekend.

"Apart from Motegi I think all the tracks we have left we have a good chance at, although obviously no one has any idea what Qatar is going to be like. I love all the other tracks we have left so I will try my hardest to fight for the championship."

Tags:
MotoGP, 2004, GRANDE PREMIO MARLBORO DE PORTUGAL, Valentino Rossi

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