After two difficult seasons in MotoGP with Ducati, Valentino Rossi is all set to return to Yamaha in 2013. Two years ago, The Doctor and his crew chief Jeremy Burgess had made some tall claims and they had swaggered off from Yamaha to Ducati with ‘smug’ written all over their faces. With no wins and just three podium finishes in two years, Rossi and Burgess have had their asses handed to them by the competition. Having swallowed a very large slice of humble pie and with their tails firmly between their legs, Rossi and Burgess are crawling back to Yamaha next year, who’ve been gracious enough to take them back.
“Yes, it will be the last race with Ducati, and for sure we’re arriving at the end of this story between us, that unfortunately never gave good performance, or the level we expected,” says Rossi, speaking at the eve of the last race of the season, in Valencia. “It will be difficult on Sunday because after you work for a long part of the year with the people, and you then have to stop and change teams. It will be very emotional. Even if the result was not fantastic, we had a good time together outside of the track, and we tried the maximum. We will see and we will try to do the best for this last race with Ducati,” he adds.
We’re pretty sure The Doctor will get back to his winning ways with Yamaha – he will almost certainly win a few races in 2013, though his championship winning days are now probably over. “It will be very interesting on Tuesday morning to understand which level I can have with the M1 and what the feeling is after two difficult seasons,” says Rossi, who will ride the Yamaha YZR-M1 again on Tuesday, next week, after a gap of two years.
Rossi was, and is, a great rider – definitely one of the best motorcycle racers ever. And if can get back to winning races on the Yamaha, the world will probably forget about his two years with Ducati. If, however, he finds out that he longer has in him what it takes to win, The Doctor will be ending his career in the worst way possible. We’re big fans of Number 46 here at Faster and Faster, and we just hope Valentino will get back on top in 2013. That’s where he truly belongs and, we have to admit, seeing him win races makes us very happy indeed.
Wish you all the best for 2013, Doctor.