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GP Week : Issue 118
Rossi ‘pre-tests’ new surface for home GP Moto GP news >> VALENTINO Rossi took advantage of a second outing on next year’s Ducati Desmosedici GP12 machine to steal a march on his rivals in preparation for his home GP at Mugello on July 3. The circuit outside Florence has been fully resurfaced, and Rossi was the first to check out how much it had changed. He gave it an enthusiastic response. “ The surface is smooth. Those holes that I knew so well are now gone, and the grip is fantastic. I must say they've done a great job, because if it’s possible, riding here at Mugello is now even better than before.” Any lingering memories of the leg-breaking crash last year were firmly dispelled: although the Misano venue for the San Marino/ Rimini GP is on the doorstep of his home town Tavullia, Mugello remains a favourite circuit. Rossi, who claimed his first Ducati rostrum at Le Mans, completed 60 laps on next year’s machine, built to the new 1000cc regulations – although it is not yet known if designer Filippo Preziosi will exploit the full available capacity. The latest GP12 prototype included electronic and other revisions that Rossi and team-mate Nicky Hayden had suggested after first tests at Jerez a month ago. “ We did many kilometres without any problems, either physical or with the GP12,” said Rossi. “ We tested everything that Filippo had planned to try, and we’re satisfied because, although we're still at a pretty early stage, we're going in the right direction.” Preziosi described the day, blessed with excellent weather, as “a useful and positive test that will enable us to continue with the development.” Second GP12 outing serves double purpose 15