Fresh from his maiden MotoGP podium finish in Malaysia, Andrea Dovizioso says he is keen to give JiR Team Scot another 'gift' in what will be his final outing for the team in Valencia this weekend.
The 22-year-old Italian was embroiled in a race long battle for a slot on the podium at Sepang and held off the challenge of Nicky Hayden during the closing laps to secure a hard fought third place behind Valentino Rossi and Dani Pedrosa.
Having already been announced as Hayden's replacement at Repsol Honda for 2009, this weekend's race in Spain will bring the curtain down on Dovizioso's long relationship with Team Scot – which stretches back to 2002 and includes his 125cc title-winning campaign in 2004.
Admitting that Valencia isn't his favourite circuit on the calendar, Dovizioso said he didn't expect a repeat of his Sepang result to come easily but said he would be doing all he could to depart the satellite Honda team on a high.
"Valencia will be my last race with the team that I made my debut with in the World Championship," he said. "These seven years have been important, we have collected many successes, including the world title in the 125 class.
"This season we wanted to be able to climb the podium, I would have preferred if it could have happened many other times, but we have only touched upon it before then finally reaching it in Malaysia. Valencia is not a circuit that I love in particular and make a prediction now that a good result will not be easy.
"We'll do the best, as always, as I would like to make another 'gift', of a good result before my change of team at the end of the season."
Team director Gianluca Montiron said he was thrilled with how the season had panned out for his team, with the focus for the season finale being on ensuring that Dovizioso retains his fifth place in the standings.
"The first race in Qatar seems to have been only yesterday, but we have already spent eight months 'on the road' and in a few days in Valencia we will take part in the eighteenth and final Grand Prix of the 2008 season," he said. "It has been a year of great satisfaction and one that we have committed to high-level goals, in both the individual races and the championship overall.
"Andrea, along with the team, has grown as a rider and has increasingly been able to better handle the various situations that come to him during the year. The efforts and the professionalism of the team have been repaid by excellent race finishes, along with the first podium in Malaysia, which was the culmination of our and Andrea's competitiveness so far.
"To be the top-ranked satellite team is a reality in Valencia and the final effort is now required to close our adventure with securing the top five finishing position in the World Championship."