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Rossi happy with start but concerned about Lorenzo

Rossi happy with start but concerned about Lorenzo

Fiat Yamaha rider tops timesheet as rookie team-mate sits out session with ankle fracture.

The fastest rider of the opening day of action in Shanghai, Valentino Rossi was happy with the start made by himself, his Fiat Yamaha mechanics and tyre supplier Bridgestone.

The Italian has identified a repeat of one of two scenarios for the Pramac Grand Prix of China, depending on the weather conditions that hit Asia on Sunday afternoon. Rossi won the inaugural race at the circuit in 2005 under soaking wet conditions, but also showed himself to be competitive last year in the dry alongside a familiar rival…

`It seems Stoner and I are a little bit faster than the others and so it looks like it could be another battle like last year!´ says Rossi, who duked it out with the Australian throughout the duration of the 2007 race.

`Our bike has more top speed here now so this is important for the long straight, but my corner speed is also good. The problem could be that the weather on Sunday might be completely different to how it is now; as usual I prefer to race in the dry but I think we are in quite good shape in the wet as well.´

The five-time MotoGP World Champion laid down his quickest time in the morning session, in contrast to the majority of the MotoGP field. He put this down to some intense heat present at the Shanghai International Circuit.

`I'm quite happy with the start we've made. We were able to go fast from the start this morning and the bike setting and the Bridgestone tyres are working very well together. We were faster this morning because this afternoon the temperature of the asphalt reached more than 40 degrees and in these conditions the tyres start to slide a bit, which makes it harder,´ he noted.

Pushed by his new team-mate at every race so far this year, Rossi was also sad to see Jorge Lorenzo suffer a morning crash that could leave him as the sole Fiat Yamaha rider on track this weekend.

`I am sorry for Lorenzo's crash, it was quite a bad one and now I hope that he is able to recover enough to try to race on Sunday."

MotoGP, 2008, PRAMAC GRAND PRIX OF CHINA, Jorge Lorenzo, Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team

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