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Reversal in direction for Fiat Yamaha at Misano

Reversal in direction for Fiat Yamaha at Misano

MotoGP World Championship contender Valentino Rossi has a lot at stake as he makes a homecoming to Misano, knowing full well that he has to reverse a downward trend if he is to catch Casey Stoner in the standings.

MotoGP World Championship contender Valentino Rossi has a lot at stake as he makes a homecoming to Misano, knowing full well that he has to reverse a downward trend if he is to catch Casey Stoner in the standings.

Since his victory at Assen three races ago, the Fiat Yamaha rider has not stepped onto the podium and has conceded 39 points to the 21 year-old Australian. Aside from Laguna Seca in the USA, Misano is the only other track on the calendar where Rossi has yet to taste victory, having never raced there in the World Championship.

"It's always very special for me to race in front of my home fans and Misano is so close to my home that it should be something amazing!" says Rossi. "Anyway, we arrive here not in such great shape, following some disappointing races. We had two days of testing in Brno and, although we weren't able to find the 'miracle' tyres that we were hoping for, we did give a lot of information to Michelin and hopefully they will have been able to use this to do some good work during this week. We will see where we are on Friday morning."

"About the track, now they've turned it around it's like a new track for everyone. Even Colin, who knows it well from Superbikes, is expecting that his previous knowledge won't help, so I think it's fair to say that we're all in the same boat. As always we will do our best and I sincerely hope that we can give the Italian fans something to cheer about!"

Rossi has 60 points to make up from the last six races of the season, but turned around a similar deficit last year to lead the classification at the final race of the year.

Team-mate Colin Edwards is riding for pride more than anything, having been disappointed with recent results. Linked with a move to Tech 3 next year - something that has yet to be confirmed by any official source - the American has previously been on the podium four times at Misano onboard a Superbike. The only problem? He did so when riding in the opposite direction to that which the riders will be travelling on Sunday….

"I remember the old layout well so I think my mechanics are going to have to remind me which way to go round the track!" jokes Edwards. "Of course I knew the old track well from my Superbike days and I've had some great races there, I liked it a lot. However all that knowledge is pretty much out of the window now we're going the other way around so I'm pretty much just viewing it as a new track. Of course I know my way around the town well and where to get the best ice cream, but I think I just need to forget everything else I remember about it!

"The test at Brno was important to try and get some more data for the tyres because the new tyre rules don't you give much opportunity to try new things during a Grand Prix. We found a front that I'm pretty happy with and made some improvements with the rear so hopefully that will help. We're not expecting miracles but we've just got to go step-by-step and keep the faith. I've been home for a few days so I'm well rested and looking forward to reacquainting myself with Misano!"

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, GP CINZANO DI SAN MARINO E DELLA RIVIERA DI RIMINI, Fiat Yamaha Team

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