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Interesting facts before the MotoGP race

Interesting facts before the MotoGP race

Interesting facts before the MotoGP race

· This is the first time that a Ducati rider has qualified on pole at the factory's home Grand Prix at Mugello.

· Sete Gibernau starts on pole for the first time since the final race of 2005 at Valencia. Gibernau started from pole at Mugello in 2004 when he finished second in the race, his only podium finish at this circuit.

· Sete Gibernau's pole position time is the fastest ever lap of the Mugello circuit by a motorcycle.

· This is the circuit at which Loris Capirossi has had most success in the premier-class, with a win in 2000 and three other podium finishes.

· If one of the Ducati riders wins the race it would be the first victory in the premier-class by an Italian bike in Italy since Gianfranco Bonera won at Imola in 1974 riding the MV Agusta.

· Valentino Rossi will be starting from the front row for the first time since the Australian GP last year. If Rossi does not finish in the top three it will be the first time since he was racing in the 125cc class back in 1996 that he will have gone four successive races without finishing on the podium. A win for Rossi would make him the second most successful premier-class rider of all time with 55 victories.

· Nicky Hayden's sixth place finish last year is his best result at the Mugello circuit.

· Shinya Nakano's tenth place finish last year at Mugello is the best ever result for the Kawasaki MotoGP bike at this circuit.

· Marco Melandri will be aiming to finish on the podium at his home Grand Prix for the first time since he won the 250cc race in 2002.

· John Hopkins' eleventh place finish at Mugello last year is the best result for Suzuki at this circuit with its four-stroke MotoGP machine.

· Makoto Tamada's tenth place on the grid is his best qualifying result this year.

· Carlos Checa is the second fastest Yamaha rider in 13th place on the grid, his best qualifying result so far in 2006.


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