US MotoGP: Rossi Backs Redding

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Valentino Rossi backs Scott Redding for Ducati switch Valentino Rossi might be close to ending his dismal spell at Ducati, but the Italian legend has backed rising British star Scott Redding’s potential move to the Bologna factory in 2013.

Gloucestershire teenager Redding has been linked with a new Ducati ‘junior’ team for next season that could be run by his Marc VDS Racing Moto2 squad.

Ducati wants to establish a new satellite team with top line factory support to develop and nurture highly-rated young talent.

Redding, who has scored three podium finishes in the ultra-competitive Moto2 series in 2012, will move a step closer to clinching a Ducati GP13 for next season when he makes his MotoGP debut in a special test for the Bologna factory in Mugello tomorrow (Tuesday).

Redding will ride a factory spec GP12 Desmosedici and Rossi believes he is a good candidate to form part of Ducati’s new strategy of developing young talent.

Italian rider Andrea Iannone will also test a GP12 this week on his home track.

Speaking to MCN about Redding in California yesterday (Sunday), nine-times world champion Rossi said: “I am very close with the Ducati guys for the future and so they ask for my advice about young riders and I spoke about Iannone but also Redding has high potential. First he is the English hope after Cal (Crutchlow) but he has good potential and he is a young guy and he can be fast.”

Rossi’s own future appears to lie away from Ducati after he suffered a disastrous US Grand Prix.

He qualified 1.9 off pole and then crashed heavily out of a lonely eighth place in Sunday’s 32-lap race on the fast approach to the Corkscrew.

He escaped unhurt but rumour is rife that Rossi will confirm a shock return to Yamaha during the summer break ahead of the next race in Indianapolis.

For more from Rossi and the latest on his future, see the August 1 issue of Motor Cycle News.

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt