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Rossi facing season finale with confidence after Brno successes

Rossi facing season finale with confidence after Brno successes

The visit to the Czech Republic could not have been better for Valentino Rossi, who found improvements in post-race tests having taken victory at Brno last Sunday.

Having extended his World Championship lead to 50 points at the Cardion ab Grand Prix Ceske republiky last weekend Valentino Rossi was one of several MotoGP riders to stay on for two full days of testing at Brno – the exercise proving well worthwhile for the legendary Italian as he made further steps forward with an already competitive Yamaha M1-Bridgestone package.

Rossi set the second fastest time behind Casey Stoner on both Monday and Tuesday and looks in good shape as he approaches the last series of races in the 2008 season – and attempts to win back the MotoGP crown which he last won in 2005.

Staying on in Brno the 29 year-old star undertook an intensive programme of Bridgestone tyre testing, as well as working on electronics and general set-up. Although he did try some qualifying tyres on Tuesday his best time of 1´56.613 was set on a race tyre and was well inside the best lap from Sunday´s race.

`It was a good test,´ Rossi commented afterwards. `We tried a lot of things and I am happy because the work with the tyres, the suspension and the bike has been good. The lap times are not too bad and I think we have made an improvement for the last few races.´

Giving specific details on the new material he had received from his Japanese tyre suppliers, he added, `Bridgestone have worked a lot on the stability, on the grip on the edge, and to produce more agility. We have looked at both the front and rear and I think the tyres have taken another good step forwards.´

On his inability to match Stoner´s test times Rossi was not overly concerned, stating, `We know that Stoner is always very fast. He always pushes hard and he is very strong, so we have a great rivalry and that is why we work to try and beat him.´

Rossi will now aim to extend his championship lead on `home turf´, the Gran Premio Cinzano di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini taking place on Italian soil at Misano, just a short drive from the five-time MotoGP World Champion´s hometown of Tavullia.

Rossi´s Fiat Yamaha team manger Davide Brivio, meanwhile, reviewed the trip to the Czech Republic, saying, `We´ve had a full couple of days testing and everyone has worked very hard, with great results.´

`This is probably our last test of the season so it´s been very important for us to have this chance to check several small things, especially tyres, electronics and setting. We have had a long week here in Brno but both the race and the test have been very successful and now we´re looking forward to Misano.´

MotoGP, 2008, Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team

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