Rossi: Pedrosa still a title threat

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Valentino Rossi has refused to rule Dani Pedrosa out of contention for the 2007 MotoGP world championship.

The Spaniard is third in the standings behind series leader Casey Stoner and Rossi having endured a tough start to the new 800cc premier class era.

The triple world champion has only registered two podium finishes so far and already trails Aussie former 250 rival, Stoner, by 40-points.

But having scored two fourth places in the last two races, Fiat Yamaha rider Rossi reckons it would be foolish to write off Pedrosa’s hopes of becoming only the second Spaniard in history to win the MotoGP crown.

Pedrosa has struggled to produce the kind of form many anticipated in ’07 with his factory Honda RC212V struggling to match the pace of rivals Ducati and Yamaha.

But Rossi, who is 19-points ahead of Pedrosa going into this weekend’s crunch showdown in Mugello, said: “In Le Mans the Hondas were not bad like in the other races.

“For me Dani is not out of the championship. The championship is long and for sure Stoner is very competitive at all the tracks and in all conditions, so it is difficult to fight with him.

And Rossi added: “But anyway Dani is not completely out of it. He is not far from me. There is Casey, me in the middle and Dani, so for me it’s not finished yet for Honda.”


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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt