Gresini Honda head to the penultimate round of the 2010 MotoGP World Championship with its two riders expressing different emotions as Marco Simoncelli looks to build on a recent run of good form and Marco Melandri
hoping to find some breakthrough on the bike.
A run of four strong top ten finishes have seen Simoncelli move clear in the battle to be classified as the top 250GP graduate, the former quarter-litre champion now a solid eighth overall in the standings.
Even so, the Italian is yet to break into the top five, a target he has set himself for the next race at Estoril.
"I was really satisfied with the race at Phillip Island but I want to see my performances reflected in numbers. It was a nice race in Australia but it was still a sixth place in the end so I need to work on my consistency. It won't be easy but that is what I will be trying to do alongside the team.
“After Phillip Island I had a 'bonus trip' to Japan for another visit to the wind tunnel. Honda are looking at using a new cowling so that I can tuck my oversize frame in.
“As soon as I got home to Italy I started thinking about Estoril, a circuit I like a lot. I won there last year and finished second in 2008 and it seems to be a place that suits my riding style so if we can find a good feeling with the bike I'm sure I can have another good race."
With just two races remaining before he embarks on a switch to World Superbikes with Yamaha, Melandri is simply looking to establish some 'feel' on the RC212V.
"At Phillip Island we were dancing to the same old tune. I can't get a feel for the bike so it's hard for me to ride. It is a tough situation but I have not lost hope and at Estoril I will try again although I think we need a miracle. We'll see but I would love to finish the season with a good result."