Rossi Just Misses Best 2011 MotoGP Finish

MotoGP: Ducati Rossi Report

At Estoril MotoGP, Valentino Rossi missed out on his best-ever finish on the Ducati Team GP11 by 0.025 of second at the line.

The Italian Vale Rossi, who held fourth for the entire 28-lap race, maintained consistent rhythm on Sunday, but couldn’t catch third-place MotoGP finisher Casey Stoner on the Repsol Honda.

But when it appeared Rossi was going to finish fourth at the Portuguese Grand Prix, the 31-year old was beat out by Repsol Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso at the line; Dovi’s teammate Dani Pedrosa took the win.

Rossi was happy with the Estoril MotoGP results, stating he is only lacking 15 percent of the strength in his healing shoulder.

Valentino Rossi (Ducati Marlboro Team GP11) says: “Apart from Dovizioso, today went well! I’m joking, but Andrea obviously rode a race that was strategically perfect. I think he played with me a little, knowing that on the straight, he could probably beat me to the line. He couldn’t pass me because I was strong on the brakes, so he had me do all the work for 28 laps before making his attempt, and he got me by twenty-five thousandths.

“Apart from that, the team and I are very happy, because it was a nice race and this, for the time being, is the best we can do. I started well, I made up several positions, and then I was very consistent, with decent times.

“I practically did the same lap from qualifying for 28 laps, so it’s a good result. My only disappointment is that fourth would have been my best finish with the Ducati. Anyway, another positive is that I’m physically well, as I’m missing just fifteen percent of my strength, but I think I’ll be at 100 percent between Le Mans and Catalunya. As for the MotoGP Ducati, there’s certainly still work to do, but we’re working together with the Ducati technicians.

“They’re pleased with the data they have, and I’m seeing that what I get from the racing department works. It will take some time, but we’re going forward. Tomorrow we’ll have some new things to try, so let’s hope that it’s dry, and we’ll see how it goes. We don’t expect to solve everything in seven hours, just to continue down the path we’ve started on together.”

Rossi will remain in Portugal for a MotoGP post-race test with Ducati teammate Nicky Hayden as the two continue to develop the GP11.