Misano for Valentino is not simply a race, but the race, and for many different reasons. On this track he was born as a rider, it is where he tested a real bike for the first time, it is a few kilometers from his home, it is the center of that yellow army that has followed him for more than twenty years all over the world. Saying goodbye to his audience for the last (or rather, the penultimate considering that we will return to racing at the end of October) with a good performance would be important for the Doctor, but so far things have not gone in the right direction.
Rossi crashed in FP3 and Q1 and tomorrow will start from the penultimate place on the grid.
"Is there anyone who says I should take my last races more calmly? It would be a choice, maybe even the right one - he joked - But I'm here and I want to do my best. Like this morning, I wanted to try to get into the top 10 and I made a mistake. I have to give my best, without doing anything crazy ".
From 23rd slot on the grid tomorrow the road will be uphill.
“I was optimistic for qualifying, because I had a good pace in FP4 - he explained - Unfortunately the hard tire has better braking potential, but it is also very close to the limit on the left side, especially at turns 6 and 15. My first lap in Q1 was not bad, but in the second I made a mistake at turn 4, I went wide, and I slowed down and then tried again in the next one. I must have gone 5 seconds slower and I was also a bit unlucky, because I didn't expect to lose the front like that. On the other hand, I didn't get hurt and I still have the pace to have a decent race tomorrow. "
It is his goal for the public (25,000 limited admissions per day due to Covid) painting the stands yellow and who is looking for his heir. It might be Bagnaia, author of a record pole.
“I will leave MotoGP with many good intentions for the Italian riders - commented Valentino - There are Pecco and Morbidelli, in my opinion they will be able to try and win the title next season. Indeed, Bagnaia could even do it this year. The greatest thing is that he rides with Ducati, an Italian rider on an Italian bike, wanting something more is difficult. It is as if in Formula 1 at Monza there was an Italian driver on pole in a Ferrari, it is the apotheosis of motorcycling and the fans will have to come in large numbers ".
Misano also has another meaning for Rossi because it is the track dedicated to Marco Simoncelli.
"I miss Sic so much, first of all as a friend, because we spent so many good times together and we had a lot of fun - he recalled - Then as a rider, because in 2012 he could have got on the official Honda and the 1000cc bike would have been better for his physique, he could have fought for the title and we would have fun. We created the Riders Academy in his honour because Marco is the first rider we helped. It is a pity that he is not here ”.
Finally, in this race the Doctor also wanted to greet his daughter, whose birth was announced a few weeks ago.
"We don’t know the name yet, we will decide at the last minute as I like it - he smiled - We decided to use some lines from 'With the pink ribbon' by Lucio Battista, in truth the song is about a man who does not want to get married, but it seemed nice to us and we made it our own. What if I'm afraid of getting married too? It doesn't fit into my plans, I'm not very interested” he concluded with a laugh.