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MotoGP, Rossi doesn't sleep after his third consecutive 'zero'

Does the blame lie with him or his team? This is the hot topic in MotoGP right now. Is he close to retirement or yet another team shake-up?

MotoGP: Rossi doesn't sleep after his third consecutive 'zero'

The 2011 season was one to forget for Valentino Rossi.
Three consecutive DNFs in Japan, Australia and Valencia, with Marco Simoncelli's terrible accident in Malaysia coming in the middle and causing the race to be cancelled.

Of his two terrible years in Ducati, those two months were clearly ones to forget.

Nothing like the current situation then, though the crash at Mugello at Arrabbiata 2 and the Montmelò strike caused by Lorenzo are now added to with the recent Dutch crash, the Italian losing control of his M1 on lap five at the very fast turn 8 and also taking out a blameless Nakagami.

A significant step back at a time when the M1 appears to have found a way out of the tunnel, considering it was on the podium at Barcelona, and occupying two spots of the rostrum at Assen.

So we cannot talk about a lack of competitiveness when the manufacturer was able to place three bikes in the top five in Holland.

But what about its rivals?

Honda, if we exclude Marc Marquez's second place finish, crossed the line 7th with Cal Crutchlow, 18 seconds back, not far off the very evident 14 of Ducati. So what crisis are we talking about?

Valentino Rossi lies fifth in the championship and in the race, shortly before his crash, he set the 7th best time of the race, on lap four, just three tenths from the best set by the winner, his team-mate Maverick Vinales.

He started further back yes, but this was also due to the fact he received a penalty after touching the green line during his fastest qualifying lap.

Almost ironic for one who, many years ago, when Race Direction was less strict, made a pass on Casey Stoner at Laguna Seca that involved cutting the Corkscrew turn and who won at Assen by going straight at the last chicane.

He made a mistake simply by overdoing it, just as Jorge Lorenzo did two weeks ago at Barcelona. In that moment, Vale had just lapped in 1.34.039, the third fastest time of the race.

"I was catching up, it was going well when I came up behind Nakagami. I tried to pass him at turn 8, but I was slightly off line and when I entered the turn the front closed. In crashing, I also took him out unfortunately. I'm really sorry about it, it was my mistake. I think the race could have gone well but for me it finished there", he commented.

Valentino is taking the blame for his mistakes then and, for now, he doesn't appear to be pointing the finger at his team.

"It's a great result for the team (Vinales' win and Quartararo's third place N.d.R.) and I'm pleased for Yamaha - added Rossi - It's an important win and Maverick deserves it because he rode impeccably right from Friday. It's an important result for me too, because having two bikes on the podium means we have to work to be as competitive as them".

The next round takes place at the Sachsenring, where Rossi finished second in last year's race, just behind Marquez but in front of Vinales, just two seconds back.

A good opportunity to quieten the ongoing retirement rumours then.


Translated by Heather Watson

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