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Rossi and Hayden ready to hit Australian asphalt

 Rossi and Hayden ready to hit Australian asphalt

The Ducati Team heads to the spectacular Phillip Island circuit for first of two overseas races in the space of two short weeks.

The Ducati Team has always finished on the podium at Phillip Island outside of 2006 when they just missed out with a fourth place. Valentino Rossi has enjoyed no fewer than seven victories at the Island in his career, plus an additional six podium finishes. On Friday, the Italian will be testing the readiness of the hand that he injured in the crash in Japan, and he’ll also try continue the good progress he made there with the GP11.1’s setup.

Nicky Hayden is a great admirer of the down under circuit, where he owns the lap record (2008), and where he will be celebrating his 150th Grand Prix this weekend. He has climbed the podium three times at Phillip Island and finished fourth with Ducati here last year.

Valentino Rossi:
“At Motegi, despite the outcome of the race and what the consequences of the crash turned out to be, there were a number of positive aspects. We worked well on the bike’s balance and setup, and in the end, from that point of view, we had one of the most positive weekends of the season. Phillip Island is another track where the Ducati has always gone well, as have I, so we hope to be able to work as well as we did in Japan. As far as my hand is concerned, the swelling is reduced, and we still have a couple of days before we go on the track. We just have to wait for Friday morning to see how it reacts.”

Nicky Hayden:
“Phillip Island is definitely one of the highlights of the year, because everything about it is special. It’s fast, flowing and really fun to ride. The big question mark is always the weather. We can get rain, wind, cold and sun, all in the course of one race weekend. Casey has won a lot of races there for Ducati, and I should have been on the podium there last year, except that I left the door open for Vale to beat me. It’s a good track for me, and although I know it won’t be easy, I really hope we can do well. I’ve got Simoncelli coming for me in the points, but I’m not really thinking about that. I’d just like to try to get a good result on Sunday, when it counts.”

Ducati Team press release

MotoGP, 2011, IVECO AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX, Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden, Ducati Team

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