China MotoGP: Toni Elias confident in Ducati

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Struggling Spaniard Toni Elias has backed Ducati and Bridgestone to help him turn round his fortunes after a dismal start to 2008.

Elias has scored just four points in the opening three races and like Marco Melandri and Alice Ducati team-mate Sylvain Guintoli, he’s had a nightmare adapting to the GP8.

But Elias remains in bullish mood as he tries to arrest his slump in fortunes in this weekend’s Shanghai race.

“It’s really tough,” said Elias, who confirmed he had visited Ducati’s factory in Bologna last week to try and get a direction with GP8 designer Filippo Preziosi.

“My situation is not easy but we are working a lot. After Estoril on Monday we improved a lot.

“I’m confident and I believe in Ducati, I believe in Bridgestone. I feel support from Ducati and from Bridgestone and I still believe a lot in the potential of this bike.

“I’m sure in a few races I can be much faster than the first part of the season. I’m really happy because I’m in a satellite team, but I feel I have a big support from Ducati.

“Last week Ducati gave me the opportunity to visit the factory and it was really important for me. I could explain my problems with Filippo Preziosi and it was a very interesting day and I think it could be good.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt