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GP Week : Issue 54
>>Moto GPnews doom for some MotoGP men Chris Vermeulen is one of the MotoGP riders possibly facing the chop –Yamaha Chief LONG-standing rumours that Valentino Rossi had stepped in to stop Yamaha hiring Casey Stoner as his team-mate in 2007 have been firmly denied by Yamaha boss Masao Furusawa. “He has never said ‘I hate some guy’, or ‘I don’t want to invite some rider’,”said Furusawa, in response to questions. “That is a decision for Yamaha, and Valentino at this point is really a gentleman,”he said. “In the usual conversations, of course he shows his preferences. He likes Colin (Edwards) very much, he likes Nicky Hayden. Maybe he hates Casey Stoner. I don’t know. But he never said anything like that.” Stoner had tested the Yamaha, and was in strong negotiations with the company after his 2006 class debut season on the LCR Honda team, but Furusawa explained how dealings with Stoner had come to an end. “Casey gave me some conditions and, I can’t say in much more detail, but this was not acceptable to Yamaha. So finally we stopped the discussion.” The Australian’s options for 2007 were running out when Ducati offered him a berth. He was only the Italian company’s third choice … but he won the title for them! 15 “Rossi did not ban stoner”