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Melandri aims for solid end to difficult year.

Marco Melandri says he would love to end his time with Ducati with a strong result at Valencia, although the Italian admits he can't be too confident ahead of the weekend after a disastrous 2008 campaign.

Having joined Ducati at the start of the year to partner 2007 champion Casey Stoner, Melandri proved unable to match the Australian on track and has managed to break into the top ten on just three occasions all season.

Rather than trying to fight for championship honours, Melandri instead finds himself battling to avoid the ignominy of finishing the season as the lowest scoring full-time rider. Going into the Valencia weekend, he currently has 51 points on the board, just one ahead of Kawasaki's Anthony West - the man he will replace next year.

While his season has been nothing short of a disaster, Melandri can at least console himself with the fact that it will draw to a close at a circuit where he has won in MotoGP in the past and while a repeat - or even a trip to the podium - is somewhat unlikely this weekend, he admitted that you never know what may happen.

"Valencia is one of those circuits that aren't really suited to MotoGP because it is so slow and narrow, with lots of second or even first gear corners," he said. "You have to have a really good set-up in order to enjoy it. I've had good races there in the past, both in 250 and MotoGP, and in general it's a track I like because it takes me back to my childhood, when I rode minibikes.

"Obviously I can't say I'm too confident about this weekend after recent results but you never know. It would be great to finish the season and my time with Ducati with a good result."

Barring an unlikely win this weekend, Melandri will end the season with his lowest points tally since making the step into MotoGP at the start of 2003.

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And - Unregistered

October 22, 2008 1:53 PM

I know it won''t happen but I would love it if he went out and blitzed the rest of the field on his way to a win!! However, I can only dream can''t I!!

And - Unregistered

October 22, 2008 3:18 PM

Marco didn't click with the Ducati this year but he is still a great (but sometimes inconsistent) rider. There is no reason to call him even though he did a crap job this year. What about the performances in 2005 and 2006. Good Luck in 2008 Marco (but I don't think Kawasaki is the place to be)

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