In January this year, Yamaha factory team ended the speculation about its brightest star yet announcing that Valentino Rossi would ride ‘his last full season’ for the team and that Fabio Quartararo would join after the upcoming season. But Yamaha kept the door to Rossi’s career with the brand a little open offering him Quartararo’s seat with Petronas Yamaha SRT should he decide to continue in 2021. The Doctor had reiterated that he was in no rush to make a decision and that he would decide based on how strong and motivated he felt in the 2020 season. However, the 2020 season has, like all motorsport events, ground to a halt due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi said on Wednesday that he does not plan to bid ‘ciao’ to his humongous legion of fans as he steps away from the Yamaha factory team. Rossi now has an opportunity to take the seat with the satellite team Petronas. “I want to continue but only if I am strong,” Rossi said in an interview with MotoGP official website.
Rossi, who finished seventh in the 2019 world championship, had hoped to gauge his performance this season which would help make a decision. “Sadly, with this situation, I must decide without being able to race. It’s suddenly more difficult, I have to think more to see if I still have as much strength and motivation.”
“I have a good opportunity with the Yamaha-SRT Petronas team which is at the top level as they showed last year with Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli.”
The last time Rossi won a MotoGP race was in 2018. “Now I have to decide for myself if I have enough motivation to continue,” he added.
“I don’t want to go to Petronas just to do one last season and say ‘ciao’. If I race, I will give 100% and, if I can be competitive, fight for the podium. I have two options – either Petronas or stop, so let’s see.”
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