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GP Week : Issue 151
Valentino Rossi is claiming a breakthrough in his quest to tame the recalcitrant Ducati Desmosedici, after a race-morning setting change at Jerez, following the lead set by his more successful team-mate Nicky Hayden. “I’m quite satisfied about today,” he said, after the race. “The result was not fantastic, but I think the race was quite important to make a step at the next races. “Today I used a completely different setting – more Ducati style than my style. “From the start with the team we have looked for setting to create a feeling I have had with bikes in the past. It was not a success. This bike is different, and needs something different.” They had applied it to the bike on Sunday. Because of his poor (13th-placed) grid position, it wasn’t reflected in his race result, but he felt his lap times showed he had found a good starting point from which to improve, while the front feeling meant he could put it into the corners harder. “Now we can try this setting from the beginning of next week, and I believe with this we can improve.” He stopped short of admitting copying Hayden, saying: “It is more like his setting, a Ducati setting, with a small improvement. “I used to like that the bike pitches a lot, with a lot of weight transfer when you brake and accelerate. “This bike doesn’t work that way ... it needs to be low, long and more flat.” Hayden smiled knowingly, when asked how he felt: “It shows we’re working in a good way ... that my crew chief knows what he is doing, if other riders try my settings and it works,” he said. ROSSI: IS THIS THE BREAKTHROUGH? Ducati’s big star copies team-mate Hayden’s settings 9 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: MOTOGP >>> NEWS