Italian MotoGP: Valentino Rossi wary of double Spanish threat

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MotoGP world championship leader Valentino Rossi has not singled out either Dani Pedrosa or factory Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo as his biggest threat in 2008.

Spanish duo Pedrosa and Lorenzo are level on points after five races and trail Rossi by three-points going into this weekend’s crucial Italian GP in Mugello.

But Rossi’s Fiat Yamaha team boss Davide Brivio believes the 29-year-old hasn’t marked down Pedrosa or Lorenzo as his biggest threat.

Brivio told MCN: “He is thinking about both for sure, including Casey Stoner as well. They are both dangerous for different reasons.

“Jorge has the same bike but different tyres and he has demonstrated that despite being a rookie he is ready to win the world championship. He is very dangerous.

“Dani is racing with Honda and they can maybe make an improvement with the bike and develop so Dani can be even faster. If you look at Le Mans maybe Dani was less aggressive, so in certain points he looks less dangerous if he doesn’t start in first position.

“When he can start in front like in Jerez he can go away. He might have done the same in Le Mans and made Valentino’s life much more difficult. But he struggled to pass Casey even though he had a better pace. If he starts well and he goes he is very dangerous. Maybe in a battle he is less dangerous than Jorge and this is my personal opinion.”

Valentino Rossi is bidding for a seventh successive victory in his home race on Sunday.


Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt