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First Bridgestone win for Rossi as he returns to the top

First Bridgestone win for Rossi as he returns to the top

It has taken a while to come but Valentino Rossi tasted MotoGP victory again in China and in doing so won for the first time with Bridgestone.

Having seen Michelin make a huge effort at the start of the 2008 World Championship following his decision to switch to Bridgestone tyres, Valentino Rossi was a relieved man as he rode his Yamaha M1 to glory at Shanghai on Japanese rubber.

Rossi´s third podium in succession came in the form of a hard-fought victory over title rival and championship leader Dani Pedrosa, with the Italian using all his experience and ability to secure his first win since Estoril 2007, seven races ago.

Much to the delight of Rossi himself and Bridgestone´s Motorcycle Sport Unit Manager, Hiroshi Yamada, the new Fiat Yamaha-Bridgestone collaboration has yielded its first victory and the partners can move forward to Le Mans - and beyond - with a weight lifted off their shoulders.

Yamada told, `Valentino was able to win today because he was very fast and very good. That is very good for us of course! We have had some big pressure about Valentino because everybody knows he is a great rider and the Yamaha bike also has very good performance this year.´

Last time out (Jorge) Lorenzo was able to win and Valentino couldn´t, so there has been pressure and we needed to win. We were quite confident here because on Friday and Saturday Valentino was really fast, though today was a little bit difficult, but anyway he won on our tyres so we are very, very happy.´

Meanwhile, Rossi added, `After seven races it is a great feeling to win again. I am very happy. This is an important result for us because above all I was able to ride exactly how I wanted from start to finish and this was great fun for me.

`We worked very well with Bridgestone and together with their technicians we made a late tyre change and it was the right choice because my tyre worked really well right up until the end, as my times showed. It´s our first win with Bridgestone and this is a great moment, so I want to say thank you to them.´

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

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