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The reason it was such a hot topic was because Argentina announced that they were going to seize the controlling interest of YPF, a Repsol subsiduary, without giving repsol any option. Spain, because Repsol is a spanish company, along with the rest of Europe were naturally a little unnerved by this and legal proceedings between Repsol and Argentina are underway. It is not a sponsorship conflict and in no way does it bring the sport into disripute. I seem to remember plenty of non Repsol riders beating the factory team before, Melandri, Gibernau, Rossi (in the Nastro days), Barros, Capirossi (Pons Hondas) so to say they have a contract with HRC stipulating that satellite riders are not permitted to win is also fairly wide of the mark. It is true, Repsol is regarded as the works team and are expected to win but they are not forcing others to lose on purpose.