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Indianapolis, Brno MotoGPs: Baker’s Dozen

MotoGP rider manager Phil Baker answers 13 questions covering the recent Indianapolis and Brno rounds...
Phil Baker has represented MotoGP riders Nicky Hayden, Chris Vermeulen, Ben Spies and Stefan Bradl.

Got a question for Phil? Post your questions for the next instalment of Baker's Dozen within the comments section below...

1. Q:
Valentino Rossi's Yamaha return was confirmed just before Indianapolis, what do you think it means for both Rossi and the sport?

Phil Baker:
This is the best news that the sport could have hoped for. Valentino has returned to the manufacturer where he has had most of his success and has the main goal of trying to beat Agostini's record number of wins.

If it were a question of money, he would still be riding for Ducati next year, but Vale needs to win and needs to be near the front. His decision to return to the Yamaha team is a bold statement and one that I think everyone in the grandstands relishes.

2. Q:
Are you surprised that Jorge Lorenzo agreed to have Rossi back?

Phil Baker:
No, not at all. Jorge is full of confidence and has been reassured by Yamaha that he is the rider they are looking at for winning the championship title. He is so settled at Yamaha and his consistent results prove that. Jorge's main concern is probably more about Honda and Pedrosa than Valentino's return right now. I still have him down as favourite to win the championship at the end of the year.

3. Q:
It's a difficult time for Ducati, how do they turn things around after the last two years?

Phil Baker:
Ducati are a great team of people who are very passionate about their brand. The structure has now changed with their new owners looking over their shoulders. Looking at how successful Audi have been in nearly every form of motorsport they have turned to, I expect that they will be able to assist the boys from Bologna considerably and it won't be long until we see Ducatis fighting for podiums on a regular basis once more.

4. Q:
Is Andrea Dovizioso the right choice to replace Rossi?

Phil Baker:
Only time will tell. To me it is a shame that Cal didn't get that ride as I believe that he has not only the skill, but also the right mentality to overcome their current shortfalls. Andrea is consistent, but he is definitely entering the Lion's den and we will see if his strength of character will fit in!

5. Q:
Cal Crutchlow has re-signed for Tech 3 - a good decision?

Phil Baker:
Definitely a good decision for Tech 3 and Yamaha. Cal will continue to improve and, I believe, show Ducati what they are missing next year. Good for Herve Poncharal and his team though and I see plenty more podiums to come.

6. Q:
The factory rides at Honda, Yamaha and Ducati are all fixed until the end of 2014, with the exception of Nicky Hayden who has a one-year deal at Ducati. That means the likes of Crutchlow and Stefan Bradl will probably have to wait until 2015 for the chance to join a factory team…

Phil Baker:
Not necessarily. It depends how Nicky does next year and also depends on how their junior team perform.

7. Q:

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