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Ducati prepares for Japanese Grand Prix

The Ducati Team is headed for the Twin Ring Motegi, a circuit that has played host to four Ducati Team wins plus an additional podium.

Valentino Rossi has posted six podium finishes at the track, including last year’s third place following a tight battle with Jorge Lorenzo. Nicky Hayden doesn’t count the stop-and-go track circuit among his favorites, with its predominance of slow corners interspersed with medium-length straightaways.

Beginning Friday morning, the two riders will work to refine the setup of the GP11.1, with hopes that the weather—the forecast for which is currently uncertain—allows them to take full advantage of the sessions.

Valentino Rossi:
“I had a nice race last year at Motegi, despite having a painful shoulder. I had a good duel with Lorenzo, and I finished on the podium. The Ducati won last year and has also gone well there in the past, so we’ll see if we can do any better than we have at the recent races. It’s true that we have to work very hard, but we always approach every Grand Prix with the goal of doing better. We’ll try hard this Sunday as well, working on the track with what we have available at this time, while also simultaneously focusing on the future.”

Nicky Hayden:
“I’ve got a lot of fans in Japan, and there are a lot of people who love motorcycles. It would be nice to put on a good show for them, as they’ve certainly had a hard time this year. The radiation situation seems to be under control, so earthquakes are the only concern. Hopefully we can have a good race. Motegi has probably been my worst track since I’ve been with Ducati, as I’ve struggled to get turned in those hairpin corners and get out strong. I’m not expecting an easy weekend, but Ducati is really working hard to give us options and to find the best direction for the future. It’s great to see them putting in so much effort, and although we’re not seeing immediate results, we’re learning a lot and getting a bunch of data that’s going to be a big help in the long term.”

Ducati Team press release

Tags:
MotoGP, 2011, Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden, Ducati Team

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