Valentino Rossi: “It gives me strength and motivation” / MotoGP

For Valentino Rossi, at the age of 42, a new MotoGP adventure began again at Petronas SRT. “My M1 wears a different dress,” smiled the Yamaha star, who finished 14th in Qatar on Saturday.

After two decades, Valentino Rossi completed his first day of testing as a customer team driver on Saturday. The nine-time world champion already feels at home in the Petronas box: “The first day was good, I really enjoyed it. In the end, not much changes because the bike is the same. The atmosphere in the team is good. The result isn’t exactly fantastic in the end, but I wasn’t that bad during the day. My pace was pretty good. As always, a lot of different riders and bikes are strong, so you have to work to the max to be ahead. But the first impression is positive. “

For the 42-year-old superstar in the scene, who is entering his 26th World Cup season, the team change is a new start: “I was very excited that morning because it was the beginning of a new adventure – new colors, new team, everything new . That gives me a lot of motivation and a lot of strength to work. It was strange at the beginning, but like I said, it’s still my M1. Even if she wears a different dress now, the rest is unchanged, ”he emphasized with a wink.

«26 seasons are a whole life, not just a career. But I feel good, there is no lack of motivation, ”affirmed the Petronas newcomer. “I know it’s a tough game because there are a lot of young riders, the level in MotoGP is very high and everyone is very strong. It won’t be easy, but I’ll give my best. This new adventure motivates me a lot. I trained hard in winter, let’s see. ”

The “Dottore” said of his new crew: “Of course I miss my Australian mechanics. But today I realized that the guys have a great passion. You have worked well and a lot. There are, of course, a lot of things that have to be coordinated, for example the pit board. Another thing is who is putting the stickers on the motorcycle. Bernard usually did that, but he’s no longer with us. So now I’m trying to find out who has the finest knack for the stickers, ”he revealed with a laugh. “Add to that the whole process, it will also be special when we are on the starting grid for the first time. You try to coordinate all these things, but that comes with time. “

Yamaha announced in advance that the factory spec of the Yamaha M1 would come closer to the predecessor model of Rossi’s teammate Franco Morbidelli this season. Was it possible for «Vale» to determine this on the first day of the test? “I think that we solved a few problems with the 2020 bike, but lost in other areas,” said the 115-time GP winner. «Franco’s second half of the season was particularly impressive because he was always one of the fastest on the track. In comparison, the factory drivers had more trouble. So Yamaha tried to improve. You worked hard over the winter, we have new parts. We haven’t tried a lot today, we’ve worked more on the groundwork. I hope that there will be something good in the next four days. “

The new features also include a chassis. “I did a few laps with the new chassis,” confirmed Rossi. “The first impression isn’t that bad, but I’ve only made six or seven laps with it. We focused on the standard bike today. In the next few days we may get a clearer idea. The problem this year is that we’re testing five days on the same track. This track is not the best to try out a new chassis. It’s a fast track, there are no tight corners, as would have been the case in Jerez or Portugal, for example, ”he pointed out.

“But we also have other interesting things,” added Vale. “We have five days of testing, so you try to split it up. It’s a little early now to say something. “

MotoGP test Qatar, March 6th:

1. Aleix Espargaró, Aprilia, 1: 54,687 min
2. Stefan Bradl, Honda, 1: 54.943 min, + 0.256 sec
3. Joan Mir, Suzuki, 1: 54.980, + 0.293
4. Jack Miller, Ducati, 1:55,022, + 0,335
5. Miguel Oliveira, KTM, 1: 55.084, + 0.397
6. Johann Zarco, Ducati, 1:55,110, + 0,423
7. Franco Morbidelli, Yamaha, 1: 55.174, + 0.487
8. Alex Rins, Suzuki, 1:55,198, + 0,511
9. Maverick Viñales, Yamaha, 1:55,259, + 0,572
10. Alex Marquez, Honda, 1: 55.278, + 0.591
11. Takaaki Nakagami, Honda, 1: 55,467, + 0,780
12. Brad Binder, KTM, 1: 55,535, + 0.848
13. Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati, 1: 55.572, + 0.885
14. Valentino Rossi, Yamaha, 1: 55.584, + 0.897
15. Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha, 1: 55.707, + 1.020
16. Cal Crutchlow, Yamaha, 1:55,807, + 1,120
17. Pol Espargaro, Honda, 1: 55,878, + 1,191
18. Jorge Martin, Ducati, 1:56,147, + 1,460
19. Lorenzo Savadori, Aprilia, 1: 56,511, + 1,824
20. Enea Bastianini, Ducati, 1: 56,593, + 1,906
21. Yamaha Test1, 1: 56,641, + 1,954
22. Iker Lecuona, KTM, 1: 56,920, +2,233
23. Danilo Petrucci, KTM, 1: 56.989, + 2.302
24. Luca Marini, Ducati, 1: 57.335, + 2.648
25. Sylvain Guintoli, Suzuki, 1: 57,460, +2,773
26. Dani Pedrosa, KTM, 1: 57,617, + 2,930
27. Yamaha Test3, 1: 58,696, + 4,009
28. Michele Pirro, Ducati, 1: 58.917, + 4.230
29. Takuya Tsuda, Suzuki, 1: 59,693, + 5,006

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