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Melandri Announces Move to Kawasaki for 2009

Ducati’s Marco Melandri has told several European news agencies, including the official MotoGP web site, that he has come to terms with Kawasaki to ride as a teammate to John Hopkins next year. Melandri has had a miserable year at Ducati, and ultimately negotiated a release from his two-year contract there. Speaking to MotoGP.com, Melandri stated “Hopkins is a very good rider and maybe he needs a stronger team-mate to be a little bit more motivated. Maybe I also need this kind of company to be motivated a little bit more because I really want to work closely together with a team-mate, so it will be a good experience anyway.”

Melandri will finish out the year with Ducati with the hope of continuing improvement in his results. He placed an encouraging seventh at Brno last weekend.