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Valentino Rossi dismisses Repsol Honda return

Valentino Rossi dismisses chances of a 2013 Repsol Honda MotoGP return
Struggling seven time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi insists Dani Pedrosa's rumoured new Repsol Honda deal makes no difference to his 2013 plans.

Rossi won the 2002 and 2003 MotoGP titles as a Repsol Honda rider, but left for Yamaha after feeling his achievements were undervalued at HRC.

The Yamaha switch immediately netted two further premier-class titles, with Rossi's sixth and seventh premier-class championships also won at Yamaha in 2008 and 2009.

Rossi's 2011 switch to Ducati has proven far less successful, with just two podiums to date, and the Italian has been linked with a move back to a Japanese bike for 2013.

With Yamaha re-signing Jorge Lorenzo, the Rossi rumours swung briefly to Honda, which needs a new rider due to the retirement of reigning double champion Casey Stoner.

However HRC bosses had said Rossi's only Honda option would be with a satellite team and the man himself claims no contact has been made.

“[Pedrosa's expected new deal] doesn't change anything for me. I was never in contact with HRC, and so going there was never an option for me,” quotes Rossi as saying.

The recent removal of the rookie rule has already cleared the way for Pedrosa's fellow Spaniard, Moto2 star Marc Marquez, to move directly to the Repsol Honda team in place of Stoner, although that is also yet to be made official.

Rossi's remaining 2013 factory options are thus to remain at Ducati, his publically stated intention, or move back to Yamaha alongside Lorenzo.

The only officially confirmed deals for next season are Lorenzo (Yamaha), Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda) and Bradley Smith (Tech 3 Yamaha).

Rossi, who has recently questioned Ducati's development plan for its underperforming GP12, added that he feels 'more relaxed' after being told that both chassis and engine upgrades will soon be available.

The Doctor starts this weekend's Sachsenring round sixth in the world championship.

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