This year Valentino Rossi and the Ducati have been making news for all the wrong reasons. Rossi’s performance on the Ducati GP11 was so underwhelming that he forced them to bring next year’s bike in a destroked form to this year as GP11.1. When this was done there was hue and cry about the ethics and some such as Casey Stoner suggested that this was akin to cheating. But whatever worries they had may have evaporated due to the even more underwhelming performance of the bike and the rider and so everybody has let things be. Nicky Hayden who initially wanted the GP11.1 was not so sure anymore after seeing Rossi struggle. Ducati has taken both the GP 11 and the GP11.1 (one each for Nicky Hayden and for Rossi) to Laguna Seca. In the first practice that had Casey Stoner on top Nicky Hayden rode the GP11 to 7th place while Rossi rode the GP11.1 to ninth. In the second session which saw Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo come to the front turned out to be even more difficult for Hayden and Rossi. Hayden rode the GP11.1 to 10th place while Rossi continued on the GP11.1 to finish in 11th place. It is just as well that Ben Bostrom is riding as a wild card since come qualifying he could be the difference between Rossi and the last place on the grid for tomorrow’s race!!!!