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Fiat Yamaha's Valentino Rossi let slip at the R1 launch in Las Vegas that, as far as he knew, Nicky Hayden had signed for Ducati and that it was a "done deal". Has anyone told Nicky?

Speaking of Ducati, Sete Gibernau reckons he will be riding a fifth Bologna Bullet in the 2009 MotoGP season. A new team thought to be spear-headed by compatriot Angel Nieto will run a Desmosedici GP9 and Gibernau reckons his deal is 60 per cent finalised. We hear it's 100 per cent.

Alex De Angelis has signed a deal to stay with Gresini Honda for 2009. Who will partner him is still the subject of discussion. Shinya Nakano has been riding the 2009 satellite-spec RC212V but that's because it is easier for him to give feedback to engineers in Japanese, and not have it translated. Put Ben Spies on the thing.


Spies, who was crowned 2008 AMA Champ after his team-mate Mat Mladin's appeal against disqualifiction was unceremoniously lobbed out, has missed out on a ride with the Suzuki team after they confirmed Capirossi and Vermeulen for 2009. He has said there is actually a lot less to do on a MotoGP bike than there is on a Superbike when you are out on track... oh yeah?

Special street signs have been put up in parts of Indianapolis celebrating some of the most famous racers in American history, including Spies Street. Good job they don't do that here. Can you imagine going up McElnea's Passage..?

Andrea Dovizioso is looking forward to racing at Indy because it's quite "short and slow". Has someone shown him a map of Mallory instead?

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