Bob, Bob, Bob......
Noooooo! Not you too!
You come across as brash (always); abrasive (most of the time); bullshi$$er (never); but as much as I love reading your retorts I have to wave the B S flag at you of all posters today?
I have never been one to give Rossi credit for what I believe is not due, he is just a helluva racer and that is his whole book, cover to cover.
I have noticed a common defense of Casey's downward spiral on the Ducati lately though, not certain they were all from you but you wacked Firebird with it anyway. While saying "is that the Ducati that despite getting worse each year ended with more points in 2010 than 2009?" is numerically correct; you are infering that "Casey" and the Ducati improved in 2010 but the detail shows this is far from honest Aussie.
In 2009 he had 3 races off for illness and one shocker of a crash on the warm up lap at Valencia and DNS. He scored in all the rest; 13 rounds 220 points.
In 2010 he contested all 18 rounds crashing out of 5 races. So would you like the breakdown? Glass half full - he finished 13 races scoring a total of 225 points. Glass half empty - he started 5 more races than the previous year but only scored 5 more points!
1 extra point for every extra round he started sounds like the bike or bike and rider combination were falling off a cliff let alone going downhill! Please Bob your better than this mate? Leave that kind of B S to the fan boys. We know it wasn't a problem with Casey as he showed up on a Honda the next year and did alright if I recall correctly?
As for 2004 the M1 engine / package was being developed long before Rossi threw his leg over it. Those modifications came from feedback provided by 2003 rider Alex Barros. Barros had ridden the RC211V in the last 4 rounds of 2002 (as you know) and he was amazed at how easy it was to ride. Barros stunned the paddock and the public beating Rossi first time out by winning at Motegi! Barros was allowed to leave his 500 for the 990 for the last 4 rounds. Rossi scored one win and three 2nd's to Barros two wins, a 2nd and a 3rd. Barros comparing the two machines told Yamaha at the end of the year they needed the torque and grunt offered by V5 Honda's. And so the great Yamaha developed by Rossi story began. Raced brilliantly, developed? Errrrr not so much.
Now behave Sir Buttamasangy!