2007 Valencia MotoGP Preview - This Is The End

For anyone who enjoyed the host of apocalyptic disaster movies which appeared at the end of the 20th century, most of which seemed to involve asteroids threatening to destroy the Earth, the atmosphere surrounding the final MotoGP round at Valencia will be instantly familiar. For almost everyone involved, either in staging, racing in, or just plain attending the event, there is a sense that the end of the world is imminent and that they'd better try and cram as much as possible into the weekend, before the endless dark of winter falls.

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Rossi Could Face Another Post-Season Testing Ban

It happened the last time he jumped ship, and it looks like it could happen again: Motorcycle News is reporting that Valentino Rossi could be prevented from taking part in any MotoGP tests until the end of the year, this time with Michelin stopping Rossi from testing on Bridgestone tires until the contract between Yamaha and Michelin expires at the end of November.

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Spies Gets Another Chance - Will Test Suzuki On Monday In Valencia

Ben Spies has not had a lot of luck when it comes to testing the Suzuki GSV-R MotoGP bike. Twice he has had tests of the bike scheduled, and twice those tests have been rained out, in Japan and in Sepang. After the washout at Sepang, it looked like that would be the AMA Superbike Champion's last chance of testing the bike this year, as the Rizla Suzuki team felt they would be too busy in Valencia helping new signing Loris Capirossi's find a base setting on his first time on the bike, and putting Chris Vermeulen to work on the 2008 GSV-R, making handling a test for Spies too difficult.

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Memories Of Summer: Some Images From Misano

As most of you know by now, we occasionally feature MotoGP photography from sources off the beaten path here at MotoGPMatters.com. A couple of months ago, someone who posts as RLCanon over on the Adventure Rider website posted up a couple of pictures from his visit to the Misano MotoGP round. We liked them a lot, and we hope you like them too.

Colin Edwards, demonstrating how to crane your neck.

 

Edwards again. His '07 helmet paint job is truly a thing of beauty, as is the tail section on the '08 M1. Shame the results aren't as good as the bike's looks.

John Hopkins looks where he wants to be going.

Style contrast: Kurtis Roberts leans his upper body over, and looks all the way to the exit, while Nicky Hayden shifts his lower body, and looks less far ahead.

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Elias Confirmed At D'Antin

Pramac d'Antin have just confirmed what we had reported earlier, that Toni Elias will ride for the Pramac d'Antin Ducati squad next year. This leaves the teams rider line-up for 2008 looking very different from their 2007 riders, two long-time MotoGP veterans.

Elias' signing brings the MotoGP silly season almost to a close, leaving only the Team KR seat open, although their plans are not yet finalized.

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Nakano Joins Gresini Honda

It had been rumored for a while, and now it's official. Gresini Racing today announced that they have signed Shinya Nakano to ride for them in 2008. The Japanese rider has had a nightmare year at Konica Minolta Honda, regularly finishing around 14th place, and must bitterly regret his decision to leave Kawasaki, now that Team Green has performed so well in 2007. The move means that Nakano will once again switch to Bridgestone tires.

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Guest Column - When A Spec Tire Isn’t A Good Idea, By The Duke

In the midst of the controversy about Dorna's proposed single tire rule, The Duke, who many of you may already know as host of the outstanding, informative and entertaining motorcycle racing podcast Rumblestrip Radio sent us an excellent opinion piece on why he feels the single tire rule should not be imposed. Although it looks like Dorna has withdrawn the proposal, it could yet be pulled out of a drawer again if tires dominate another season of racing.

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Single Tire Proposal Withdrawn - Updated

After weeks of speculation and controversy, Autosport's Toby Moody is reporting that Dorna has withdrawn the proposal to use a control tire in MotoGP. Presumably this means that Carmelo Ezpeleta got what he wanted with the rule, but just what that is, is yet to be seen. Whether that means that Valentino Rossi will be on Bridgestones next year or on Michelins is likely be made clear within the next couple of days. Stay tuned.

~~~ UPDATE ~~~

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Spies Test At Sepang A Washout

The weather at Sepang, which had held off for Sunday's MotoGP race, has scuppered Ben Spies plans to test the Suzuki GSV-R 800 MotoGP bike. Spies, who won the AMA Superbike title aboard a GSX-R 1000, had flown to Malaysia for his first outing on the Suzuki, to acquaint himself with the bike, with a view to taking a couple of wildcard rides in 2008 before possibly making the switch to MotoGP in 2009. The weather had different ideas, however.

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