Andrea Dovizioso has refused to blame his reluctance to move the Gresini Honda squad in 2011 on a strained relationship with fellow Italian Marco Simoncelli.
Dovizioso’s contract saga with HRC continues to drag on with the former world 125GP champion still insisting that he is part of Honda’s official factory squad next season.
Honda though is pushing Dovizioso towards the satellite Gresini Honda squad having failed to secure the funding necessary to run a three-rider factory team that would let Dovizioso ride with Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa.
Honda has a major headache with Dovizioso invoking a clause in his contract at the end of July that assured him of a factory deal for 2011.
HRC has offered Dovizioso a full factory RC212V in the Gresini squad, which appears to have appeased the 24-year-old to an extent, though no official has been made.
Dovizioso said: “I think it will be really difficult for Honda to have three bikes next year in the HRC team. Maybe they will have four factory bikes but not in the HRC team. We are still speaking about that.”
He rubbished rumours that he had a non-existent relationship with Simoncelli or team boss Fausto Gresini.
He told MCN: “This would not be a problem and not the reason why I don’t want to go there. The reason is because I have a contract to stay with HRC, Gresini is one of the best satellite teams and Simoncelli is not a problem.”