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Rossi did what he could but ultimately the bike didn't move forward much, if at all. In effect, Ducati wasted their time and money.
I do agree that Rossi's heart wasn't in it, but that was only because he couldn't get the bike to work and chose not to take big risks to try to finish in 5th place rather than 7th or 8th place. For Rossi, overriding a bike he has little chance of winning on is simply no something he's gonna do.
Kenny Roberts Jr was the same way on his last years on the Suzuki. He knew the bike wasn't there and chose not to take big risks for a result. John Hopkins took those risks and ended up with a long list of injuries as a result.