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Rossi ready to defend championship lead from second

Rossi ready to defend championship lead from second

In second place on the grid for Sunday’s 14th race of the year, Valentino Rossi was pleased with his progress on Saturday in Portugal.

World Champion Valentino Rossi will be doing everything possible not to concede any ground on Sunday at Estoril as he goes into the Portuguese contest behind his team-mate Jorge Lorenzo on the grid, but 30 points ahead in the standings.

Rossi qualified 0.26s behind poleman Lorenzo on Saturday, before stating, “I’m happy because it is our best result so far this weekend and it will be very important to start from second in Sunday’s race. We improved the balance of the bike a lot this afternoon and the braking performance, now we have some traction problems on exiting from the slow corners so we have to improve on that on Sunday morning. We hope to be more competitive in the race.”

Giving his predictions and stating his objectives for Sunday’s race, Rossi added, “I expect a close battle. I think Jorge (Lorenzo) is looking the most competitive, but (Casey) Stoner is close and (Dani) Pedrosa is not so far away, so that’s why it is so important to make a good start and to give it our maximum effort.”

“It will be quite a strong fight tomorrow I think and 28 laps in this heat is going to be hard, but we will be ready.”

MotoGP, 2009, GRANDE PREMIO DE PORTUGAL, Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team

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