While attention is focussed on the last two races of reigning MotoGP champion Casey Stoner's career, former seven time winner Valentino Rossi
is entering his final races for Ducati.
Rossi is returning to Yamaha for 2013, after struggling to be competitive on the Italian motorcycle, meaning this weekend's Australian round and the Valencia finale will mark his final Desmosedici appearances.
Rossi, who has taken two podiums in each of his Ducati seasons, was unbeaten at Phillip Island from 2001-2005. However he crashed out of seventh place in last year's race.
“For us, these are two important races for sure because they are the last ones for Ducati,” he said. “Especially here, in the past this was one of my best circuits, but last year was a very bad weekend for us.
“So we are very concentrated to give the maximum, do better and also we need some points because we are in the fight for fifth place,” added Rossi, who is just six points behind Alvaro Bautista in the standings.
Rossi will make his debut on the 1000cc M1 during the Valencia post-race test from November 13-14, with all three factory MotoGP teams having revised rider line-ups for 2013.
“Next year unfortunately we lose Stoner and arrive Marquez, who I think has the potential to be very fast in MotoGP in a short period. And I go back to Yamaha,” he said.
“So it looks like good riders on good bikes next year, but sincerely I don't know what I can do. Maybe I will have a clearer idea after the first test in Valencia.”