Rossi: Third in championship "miraculous" amid Yamaha woes

Valentino Rossi says his third place in the current MotoGP standings is “miraculous” given Yamaha's recent struggles.

Rossi: Third in championship "miraculous" amid Yamaha woes

Rossi is winless since last year's Assen race and finished a disappointing seventh last time out at Misano, but remains third in the championship, albeit some 70 points down on runaway championship leader Marc Marquez.

Asked whether it was frustrating that his title hopes were already as good as gone with six races left in the campaign, Rossi said: "Yeah, but you have to stay concentrated and give the maximum because in the championship I am miraculously third.

"Sincerely I don't understand in which way I can be third.

"Can be, I think, very difficult to stay in third, but we have a target, we have to try to stay, and we are not far from Dovi [Andrea Dovizioso], we have more points than [Jorge] Lorenzo, more points than Maverick [Vinales].

"Under the championship point of view, we have some important result to catch."

Misano has been a strong venue for Rossi and Yamaha in the past, which only added to his disappointment of finishing some 19 seconds behind race winner Dovizioso on Sunday.

"It was a very big shame to not be competitive here in Misano in front of all the people in the crowd," he said. "Sincerely I expect to be a bit stronger because in FP4 [in race pace practice] I was not too bad.

"I was worried for the race but quite optimistic because the condition of the race is like yesterday [Saturday].

"But already from half of the first lap I understand that it's not the same.

"Yesterday I do [1m]32.9[s], 33.0, 33.1, 33.2 after 16 laps of tyres. Today I was close to one second slower."

Teammate Vinales, who finished three seconds up the road in fifth, was likewise confused as to why his strong practice pace didn't transfer to the race.

"After FP4 my feelings were really good. I ride quite easy in [1m]32[s] in FP4, but on the race was totally opposite feeling.

"Very slippery track as usual, losing a lot on the braking area."

Asked whether he'd got to the bottom of his recurring lack of early-race pace, Vinales said: "I think when the grip level on the bike will be good, I will push from the first corner. Today I try it but already from the second corner I nearly make a highside.

"I know where is the level of the grip. [Alex] Rins and Cal [Crutchlow] overtook me like I was stopped in the corner. And yesterday was the opposite.

"So, honestly, I didn't understand why, but it's like this, in the races we cannot be as competitive as in FP4, or qualifying, or FP1, even FP1."

Additional reporting by Oriol Puigdemont and Lena Buffa

Maverick Viñales, Yamaha Factory Racing

Maverick Viñales, Yamaha Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / LAT Images

shares
comments
Redding "felt dangerous" to other riders in Misano race

Previous article

Redding "felt dangerous" to other riders in Misano race

Next article

Injured Espargaro "completely f***ed" after Misano race

Injured Espargaro "completely f***ed" after Misano race
Load comments
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Prime

How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike

His third place at Misano made Enea Bastianini the fifth different Ducati-mounted rider to score a podium in 2021. Amid a season that has seen one rider amass the bulk of Yamaha and Honda's success, the Ducati's versatility makes for a potent weapon, but the contribution of a former leading light shouldn't be forgotten

MotoGP
Sep 23, 2021
The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career Prime

The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career

Maverick Vinales’ early debut with Aprilia has been one of the most interesting plots of the recent MotoGP rounds. The results may not look standout on paper, but a closer inspection reveals just how much progress Vinales has truly made in understanding a bike that has taken him well out of his “comfort zone”.

MotoGP
Sep 22, 2021
Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future Prime

Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino GP will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP's present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia's flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021
How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Prime

How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Prime

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Prime

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Prime

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the track's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP Prime

How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP

The 2020 MotoGP season was an enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if you thought the world championship was a poorer place without Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape.

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021