Marlboro Ducati’s Casey Stoner will need a bone graft on his injured wrist straight after the Valencia MotoGP round and faces a three-month period of rehabilitation. It means he will miss the official IRTA tests at the end of the season, but has already done plenty of laps on the carbon-framed GP9.
Gresini Honda have finally announced the return of Toni Elias to the fold. In another world’s worst-kept-secret, Elias goes back to the team he raced for in 2006 and 2007.
Nicky Hayden is welcoming his return to Phillip Island, saying he loves the track but not the weather. "Maybe they should call it Phillip Iceland," he quipped. Such a boy, isn’t he?
The Repsol Honda team produced a big cake after the Motegi test for Dani Pedrosa as it was his birthday. He actually smiled at it. And then Alberto Puig told him to stop or he would be sent to bed without any tea.
Both Suzuki and Kawasaki team bosses have refuted claims they were about to follow Ducati into talks with Michelin in an attempt to block the single-tyre rule. Yeah, right ho…
Tech3 Yamaha boss Herve Poncharal says he isn’t worried about a single-tyre rule in 2009. Poncharal’s team have struggled on Michelins all year, so claims that it will have an averse effect on independent teams are, in fact, bollocks. "Paf," he probably added, while throwing his arms in the air.
Rossi’s team boss Jeremy Burgess isn’t a big fan of said tyre rule, saying the point of racing is competition. Burgess, who has guided Rossi to all of his MotoGP titles, says it’s very well delivering a good show, but it’s also about going faster this week than you did last week.
Ducati have stated that the deal with Sete Gibernau to run a fifth bike is not under threat. It was thought the deal was in trouble as the Spanish rider wanted his old crew chief Juan Martinez in the Onde2000 squad, but Ducati has said it will run its own engineers, thank you very much.
Repsol Honda new boy Andrea Dovizioso said he seriously considered moves to Kawasaki and Kawasaki’s teams before settling on the works HRC ride. Yeah because that’s what I would have done. HRC or not very good Kawasaki? Daddy or chips?
A last-ditch bid to sort out a third Kawasaki next year looks to have thrown a lifeline to out-of-favour Shinya Nakano. It was thought that Carlos Checa might be in the frame on the Aspar-run bike, but he has signed with Ten Kate Honda in WSB. Toni Elias was first on the list, but he has gone to Gresini Honda.
The proposed and not very popular GP2 600cc class has got approval by MotoGP suits and has been checked and ticked by Sigisimund, the Mad Maths Master. In the rules, there is a claiming clause which means that if any teams produce a propertrick and flash engine that is not illegal, someone else can buy if for £16,000. This rule was dreamed up in the Seventies in AMA and caused all sorts of blood to be spilled. That’s progress then…