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GP Week : Issue 43
>>Moto GPnews eel the pressure could be a serious worry to beleaguered-by-rules Dorna. After a number of tyre issues at Qatar and more surfacing in practice at Motegi, Rossi said that a promised review after three races of the tyre rule is urgently needed. The problem was not the restricted number of tyres, but that Bridgestone offered a choice of only two compounds. “We need more choices; like this it is difficult.” The hard tyre on Friday had been sliding badly in the cold, he said. “It is very easy to make a mistake or crash, so it is dangerous.” Melandri was another who called the situation “not very safe”. Rossi also highlighted the lack of any intermediate tyres for mixed wet-and-dry. The riders had agreed reluctantly to a choice of two compounds, said Rossi, in exchange for a review after three races. But even if the rule is changed, Bridgestone have indicated a reluctance to change its existing commitment. One problem is that consignments of tyres for upcoming circuits have already been despatched by sea. The 45-minute practice sessions have also been criticised as too rushed to be fully useful. A GP Commission meeting at Jerez next week will consider revising the rule, returning practice to a full hour but limiting the number of laps. Haojue denies quit rumours A bad weekend for the fledgling Chinese-backed Haojue 125 team was compounded when team chief Garry Taylor was confronted with rumours that the giant Haojue factory was contemplating turning its back on the project. “I’ve no reason to think that’s likely,” responded the former Suzuki team chief. “It has always been a three- year project and it will take a while. The quality of entry is going to take a while for us to be competitive.” The team had already withdrawn both riders Michael Ranseder and Matthew Hoyle from the race after the second free practice session, after undisclosed engine problems. It was a shortage of parts that prompted the decision, said Taylor. “These are very new bikes with lots of evolutionary parts and we got caught out.” Taylor has already been obliged to deny rumours that engine designer Jan Witteveen had quite the project. Team patron John Surtees suffered a heart attack in November, but is expected to make a full recovery, said Taylor. 17