“I’m glad it’s time for Mugello, it’s a special weekend and a special race for all the Italian riders,” Valentino Rossi said ahead of the Grand Prix of Italy, the sixth round of the MotoGP season.
“It has a fantastic atmosphere, but it’s also a bit tricky to manage with all the fans, but it’s really great,” Rossi continued. “This is one of the most beautiful race tracks of the year. It’s a track I really like, but it will be hard because everybody is very fast. Mugello does have less acceleration from a low speed, so I think we could be faster than in Le Mans, but it is also true that there is a very long straight. Surely this will be our weak point, but if we work well, we can defend ourselves. We need to try our best to be competitive and give the maximum.”
Rossi has certainly been competitive at the track in the past, claiming seven straight victories at the Autodromo del Mugello from 2002 through 2008.
“Valentino is always highly motivated, but this weekend perhaps even more so, if that‘s possible, because he is on home soil and he was close to a podium at the last GP,” Team Director Massimo Meregalli said.
Maverick Viñales will be aiming for redemption after an unfortunate end to his French Grand Prix.
“After the crash at Le Mans, I left the circuit with a bad taste in my mouth, I was very disappointed,” Viñales said. “We worked very well all weekend, but the problem was that I started too far from the first row of the grid. We’ve learned from this, we have to work hard on Saturdays.
“I’m really looking forward to being back on my bike this weekend. During the last Grand Prix I had a good feeling on the M1, it was almost perfect and I was able to go very fast. We are solving all the problems step by step. I’m sure that we are heading in the right direction. So, if we’ll continue working hard, good results will arrive soon. Mugello is a track that I like and where I’ve always had a lot of fun, and it’s perfect for my riding style, so let’s see what happens.”