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Pedrosa determined to bounce back at Sepang

Pedrosa determined to bounce back at Sepang

Having taken his first podium on Bridgestone tyres in Japan things went horribly wrong for Dani Pedrosa in Australia, but he is keen to get back on track this weekend in Malaysia.

After his costly first lap crash at Phillip Island just over a week ago Dani Pedrosa heads for South East Asia and into the Polini Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix weekend looking to immediately put things right.

On the back of his first podium with his new technical package - the pneumatic-valve RC212V on Bridgestone tyres – when he finished third at Motegi at the end of September, Pedrosa arrived at Phillip Island in a confident mood and was looking for another rostrum finish from sixth on the grid when he ran off track at speed on the opening lap and crashed heavily, hurting his left knee in the process.

`We weren´t so lucky at Phillip Island and sometimes you have some bad luck in racing,´ commented the Repsol Honda rider. `But we are already looking forward to Malaysia where I am determined to make up for the mistake I made in the last race. I´ve got still some pain from the accident, my left knee is a bit swollen, but I hope I will soon be in perfect condition.´

Still in with an outside chance of repeating his 2007 World Championship runner-up position, Pedrosa is 36 points behind second-placed Casey Stoner with two rounds remaining. However, the Spaniard is simultaneously fending off a late challenge for third place, with his in-form compatriot Jorge Lorenzo now just 27 points behind him in the standings.

Although Pedrosa suffered a nasty accident at Sepang during winter testing earlier this year in January – sustaining a hand injury which affected his pre-season preparations – he has a good record at the Malaysian venue, having twice won there in the smaller classes (taking a 125cc victory in 2003 and triumphing there in 2004 on 250cc machinery).

`I had a very good feeling at Sepang in pre-season testing before the crash,´ stated the 23 year-old. `I had a good pace from the beginning and I hope to start this weekend in the best way with the new bike and tyres.´

Since his promotion to the premier class Pedrosa has been on the podium twice at Sepang, finishing third on the two occasions he has raced there in MotoGP, in 2006 and 2007.

He describes the track saying, `It is quite long with a good combination of right-handers and left-handers, many of which are quite long. The motorcycle needs tyres of a tough compound for this race, and tyres play a very important role in the heat.´

`Both the front and rear tyres are of a similar compound because they both have to work very hard: there is a lot of heavy braking, which asks a lot of the front end, and there is a lot of hard acceleration, which affects the rear. The track has a lot of different corners and sections, so the riding style you use is quite varied and it is very physically demanding because of the heat.´

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, POLINI MALAYSIAN MOTORCYCLE GRAND PRIX

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