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Alice due to confirm riders at Sepang.

The Alice Ducati team are expected to add their piece of the 2009 MotoGP jigsaw puzzle at the forthcoming Malaysian Grand Prix by announcing their two riders for next season.

One of the few teams remaining to unveil their 2009 line-up, Alice have nonetheless been the subject of fevered speculation over recent weeks in line with their sudden burst of form mid-season.

Buoyed by Toni Elias' two consecutive podiums at Brno and Misano, the revived Ducati outfit tried hard to retain the Spaniard before he defected to the Gresini Honda team for 2009, while Sylvain Guintoli's almost certain departure means it is all change for Alice next year.

As such, paddock rumours, according to the official MotoGP website, place 250GP star Mika Kallio and Ducati test rider Niccoló Canepa in the team to form what would be an all rookie line-up for the eponymous squad.

A formal announcement is due to take place in Sepang on the weekend of 17-19th October, where Kallio and Canepa would become the second and third rookies confirmed to the 2009 grid after Yukio Takahashi's graduation with the Scot Racing Team.

Elsewhere, expanded Ducati and Kawasaki efforts continue to linger just below the point of confirmed. Ducati are still working on a plan to get Sete Gibernau back to MotoGP riding a fifth machine that is expected to be sponsored by property developers Onde 2000.

Kawasaki, meanwhile, continue to thrash out a deal to run a third bike in 2009, with Gresini refugee Shinya Nakano now seemingly favourite to ride the bike next season.


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Andy Duke

October 10, 2008 7:48 AM

Mika Kallio will show to all sceptics that he belongs to MotoGP! You will see it! :-o It's will and skill!!! :) Have to hope that Ducati take it serious to help Junior Team as a factory team. Good Luck to Mika!



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