2007 MotoGP Phillip Island Preview - Homecoming

There's something ineffably romantic about a newly-crowned champion returning to his native soil to be feted in his home race. And at first sight, Casey Stoner would seem to fit that poetic  notion just perfectly: a handsome youngster and his beautiful young bride return home after securing the world title in a tightly-fought battle with a grizzled veteran. But cast anything more than that cursory glance at the situation, and the romance disappears faster than a Ducati GP7 down Qatar's front straight.

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Proposed Single Tire Rule Unpopular With Most Riders

Battle continues over the proposal from Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta to institute a single tire rule, aimed at putting an end to the perception that this year's racing has been unexciting. Where previously, much of the comment has come for the proposal's supporters, now, a bevy of top riders have spoken out against the idea. According to Autosport.com, Casey Stoner, Chris Vermeulen and Marco Melandri have all rejected moves to a single tire make for MotoGP.

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Spies to Ride GSV-R in Japan

Ben Spies, 2006 and 2007 AMA Superbike champion, is reportedly in Japan at to meet with top-level Suzuki executives and to test a GSV-R 800 similar to the one he will ride after the Sepang round. Spies will visit Suzuki headquarters in Hamamatsu and will test at Suzuki’s Ryuyo Testing Grounds. Purposes of the visit are to fit Spies to the bike and to generally familiarize him with the operation of it.

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Hofmann Fighting to Keep Ride

Alex Hofmann has issued a press release indicating that he intends to contest his sacking from the Pramac d'Antin team and "will fight this decision with all legal resources at my disposal." Hofmann goes on to outline why he thinks the team's action was unjustified and attempts to explain his actions at Estoril.

Full text at: http://roadracingworld.com/news/article/?article=30410

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Kropotkin Visits Borgo Panigale, The Monday After That Sunday.

Borgo Panigale. Monday, September 24th. The day after. I arrive at the gates of the Ducati factory, just two short streets from the main freeway which circles Bologna, at around 5:30pm, just as the day shift starts to head for home. I know I am close to the factory, as I see a grown man in a Ducati cap hurrying round a corner with the look of a child on Christmas morning on his face, his wife trailing indulgently behind.

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Davies to Ride d'Antin Ducati

Pramac d'Antin Ducati has announced that British rider Chaz Davies will ride for the team in the final 3 races of the 2007 MotoGP season. Davies previously filled in for Alex Hofmann at the last minute at the Laguna Seca round and has tested the Ducati in Mugello this year. Chaz had to turn down a offer to ride for the team at Motegi because of complications from an elbow injury incurred during the testing session.

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Mike's Motegi Mini Race Report

Crazy, crazy stuff.

Rain and a drying track scramble everything in the land of the rising sun.

Capirossi rolls the dice and comes in early for dry tires. The gamble pays off and Capirex wins his 3rd Motegi race in three years. DePuniet comes in second, his best result ever, then Elias. All the Bridgestone riders went back out on slicks.

Guintoli nearly gets Dunlop on the podium.

Rossi gambles and loses by staying out a bit too long on his wet tires..

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Repsol Tire Choice(s)?

Very interesting article on the Repsol tire situation up on the Cycle News site. In a nutshell, Honda is saying that they don't know what brand they'll be using next year and Bridgestone is saying that they turned HRC down weeks ago.

Hmmm.... Curiouser and curiouser, cried Alice....


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Little Dani, Happy at Last?

HRC announced on Friday that Dani Pedrosa has re-signed with Repsol Honda for the next two years. This announcement has been a long time coming with rumors of Pedrosa's displeasure with Honda and Michelin widely circulated. It has been no secret that Pedrosa, the so-called "Future of Honda" has been very unhappy with the Honda RC212V that was reportedly designed with riders of smaller stature (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) in mind.

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Davies out of Motegi? (Updated)

Toby Moody at Autosport.com is reporting that Chaz Davies has taken himself out of consideration to replace Alex Hoffman at Motegi. Davies apparently had a bad reaction to a tetanus shot he recieved following an injury to his elbow during testing the d'Antin Ducati GP07 at Mugello last week. At Laguna Seca, Davies had to visit the hospital and his poor physical condition was exacerbated by two crashes over the weekend. It is not known at this time if d'Antin will be able to secure another rider for the Japanese round.


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Mike's Motegi Preview (updated)

For Casey Stoner, this could be the week that was. That is, the week he is crowned MotoGP World Champion. The fact that it could be in the land of the rising sun, the home of the Japanese big 4 manufacturers makes it that much sweeter, if not for Stoner, then certainly for Ducati. The last time a non-Nipponese machine won the premiere class was in 1974, when an MV Agusta piloted by Englishman Phil Read prevailed. 33 years is an awfully long dry spell and it has built an powerfulful thirst for victory.

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