In the brief “break” between the Qatar tests and the first two rounds of the season, taking place at the same Losail track, Valentino Rossi has taken the opportunity to train in a place that is particularly special to him.
Or rather, the Mugello circuit. The Tuscan track has seen #46 win something like nine races, across practically all classes in which he has competed. So, 125, 250 and MotoGP. Not in the 500 though, as in 2000 and 2001, the then Honda rider scored a twelfth and a DNF.
Last year The Doctor didn’t race at Mugello at all. In fact the entire paddock missed out on the Italian round for reasons we all know. Despite the 2020 absence, teams will soon return to the Tuscan circuit, this year’s round scheduled for 30 May.
The R1 road bike isn’t the M1 prototype but...
... it’s fun and keeps you in shape. Many say it but few can do it. With limited MotoGP test days that are organised ad hoc, riders need to ‘settle’ for private sessions where they ride anything they can.
And for Valentino, it’s the Yamaha four-cylinder big bang. All black and with a number 46. Beautiful, quick and fun to ride. There’s not long to go until the season-opener, the start of Rossi’s twenty-sixth year in the world championship. And the fans at every track – we hope to see them back soon – particularly Mugello, can’t wait to see him.
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Translated by Heather Watson