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Elías happy to be racing with Gresini again

Elías happy to be racing with Gresini again

As he makes the final preparations for Qatar Spaniard Toni Elías is excited about returning to competitive action with San Carlo Honda Gresini.

Heading into his fifth season in the premier class Toni Elías will be looking for a big improvement in 2009, having struggled last season on a satellite Ducati bike with which he never got fully comfortable.

The 26 year-old of course returned to the Honda Gresini team over the winter and despite not having had a perfect preseason, he is hopeful he can get a good result this weekend at the Commercialbank Grand Prix of Qatar.

Re-united with Fausto Gresini, under whose management he rode for two years in 2006 and 2007 achieving his career highlight Portuguese MotoGP win in ’06, Elías has familiar faces around him again this season and will enjoy factory support from HRC.

He was not as high up the test timesheets as he would have hoped to be during the winter and was visibly disappointed at the end of the Jerez test just over a week ago when he completed the BMW M Award session in ninth place.

The rider and his team have admitted they still have adjustments to make in order to find the right setting for Elías’ RC212V, as the man from Catalunya explained, “We have struggled a little more than we expected in testing but we know where the problems lie and it is good to be going back to a circuit where we already have lots of data.”

On an enthusiastic note, he continued, “I’m happy to be going racing with this team again, with Honda and on this fantastic bike. Ideally I’d like to be starting the season in better shape but the truth is we have work to do in a short space of time when we get out to Qatar and we’ll be pushing hard in every aspect to approach the race in the best possible way.”

Referring to the peculiarities of this weekend’s floodlit season-opener Elías also stated, “Racing at night makes it a bit tricky but Losail is one of my favourite circuits and I’ve started on the front row there twice before – both times with this team. I remember in particular three years ago we were three seconds off the pace on the first day and still managed to qualify on the front row. That just shows how quickly things can change in racing so we’ll go there with optimism, fight hard and see what happens.”

MotoGP, 2009, COMMERCIALBANK GRAND PRIX OF QATAR, Toni Elias, San Carlo Honda Gresini

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