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MOTOGP NEWS 

Ducati chose Bridgestone to beat Rossi

Ducati Corse CEO Claudio Domenicali says the team opted for Bridgestone tyres because they knew it would be difficult to beat Valentino Rossi without a technical advantage.

Casey Stoner's 2007 title is the first MotoGP championship success for both Bridgestone and Ducati. Their partnership began in 2005, and Domenicali revealed that team boss Livio Suppo had pushed for the tyre switch as a reaction to Ducati's failure to sign Rossi.

"Before getting to this point we went through good and not as good times, with some difficult decisions like moving on to Bridgestone," Domenicali was quoted as saying by Corriere della Sera's website.

"That was the result of some reasoning: we had huge admiration for Rossi, we had tried to sign him, but we didn't manage to.

"Having thought that it would have been difficult to beat him with the same technical conditions, Livio had an idea that has turned out to be a winner: to face him with different weapons. That is different tyres."

Domenicali added that Ducati were immediately convinced by the quality of Bridgestone's MotoGP effort.

"I remember well the first contact with Bridgestone: we had found a company with technology, resources and motivations that convinced us that with time we would achieve results," he said.

"It was decisive to be Bridgestone's reference point and to create a team to develop the tyres. A fundamental point when designing the bike too.

"Until last year Michelin had an undisputed superiority. Bridgestone has paid for its apprenticeship and now the situation is level in my opinion. It's part of competition. If a single-tyre comes, then we'll see what to do. We know there are some good and bad points about it."

He admitted that Rossi was now always likely to remain a rival of Ducati, but did not rule out the possibility of the Italian legend riding for the Italian manufacturer at some point in the future.

"I still regret the way things went with Valentino," Domenicali said. "The way things are, it's unlikely (he will ever join Ducati). But who knows? Never say never."

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