Friday, October 20, 2006

MotoGP: Elias stays, Bayliss visits

After his brilliant win at Estoril, Toni Elias has signed a new contract to stay with the Gresini team for 2007. The rumours were rife that Toni would be dropped by the satellite Honda team, but his victory has unexpectedly sealed his position in MotoGP. It had been a poor year for the Spaniard, with lots of crashing and only one or two half-decent performances. Winning a race was probably the only way Toni was going to stay in the series, and that's exactly what he did. His new contract is richly deserved.
The win in Portugal brought the number of wins by the Gresini team to 4 for this year, with Toni's win added to Marco Melandri's 3. This is the same number of wins as HRC have achieved so far in 2006. An impressive record for a satellite team.
For the final race of the season at Valencia, Troy Bayliss will stand in for Sete Gibernau, who was injured in a crash with his own replacement last week. Bayliss was actually the first person to ride the 990cc Ducati MotoGP bike in public. Coincidentally, that was also at the Valencia track. It will be interesting to see how the Australian does around the twisty Spanish track, which most riders claim is too tight for the 990cc machines.


Anonymous said...

I am curios to see him again in Motogp after having dominated the WSBK for the second time in his career. Are the Bridgestone tires going to be on in Valencia?

Jimmy said...

Yep, Bayliss has been great in WSBK this year, although he has fallen off a couple of times. He had a few good performances on the MotoGP Ducati too.
As for the tyres, your guess is as good as mine. :-)