Valentino Rossi

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Valentino Rossi (born February 16, 1979) is an Italian professional motorcycle racer and multiple MotoGP World Champion. He is widely considered one of the best motorcycle racers of all time, with 7 Grand Prix World Championships to his name. In 2006, he narrowly missed an 8th title by scoring a second place in the Championship, and now continues in the 2007 season as one of the title favourites. According to Sports Illustrated, Rossi is the 7th highest earning sports personality in the world (2nd outside the United States), earning an estimated $30 million a year.[1]

Following his father, Graziano Rossi, Rossi started racing in Grand Prix in 1996 for Aprilia in the 125cc category and won his first World Championship the following year. From there, he moved up to the 250cc category, again with Aprilia, and won the World Championship in 1999. He won the 500cc World Championship with Honda in 2001, the MotoGP World Championships (also with Honda) in 2002 and 2003, and continued his streak of back-to-back championships by winning the 2004 and 2005 MotoGP World Championship after leaving Honda to join Yamaha.

The early years

Valentino Rossi was born in Urbino, Marche, and grew up in the town of Tavullia. Son of Graziano Rossi, a former motorcycle racer, he first jumped on a bike at the age of two, and his astounding career progressed in leaps and bounds.

Rossi's first racing love was actually go-karts. Fuelled by Rossi's mother, Stefania's, concern for her son's safety, Graziano purchased a go-kart as substitute for the bike. However, the Rossi family trait of perpetually wanting to go faster prompted a redesign; Graziano replaced the 60cc motor with a 100cc national kart motor for his then-5-year-old son.

Although Valentino showed interest in such things as his guitar and playing soccer, his interest in school and study waned. Shrugging off his mother's attempt to get him to attend soccer school, he found more interest in the gravel pits and various motorcycle GPs.

Graziano attempted to forge documents in an attempt to get Valentino's junior kart licence one year before he was legally allowed (he was 9 at the time), but ultimately failed.

Valentino won the regional kart championship in 1990. At the time, a new craze had taken over. The minimoto had now become his weapon of choice, and before the end of 1991, he had won 16 regional races.

Although minimoto was for fun, he continued to race karts and finished fifth at the national kart championships in Parma. Both Valentino and Graziano had started looking at moving him into the Italian 100cc series as well as the corresponding European series, which most likely would have pushed him into the direction of Formula 1. However, the high financial burden of racing karts led to the decision to race minimoto exclusively. Through 1992 and 1993, Valentino continued to learn the ins and outs of minimoto racing, steadily racking up win after win.

The move to motorcycles

With Rossi growing in talent, it became abundantly clear that a proper motorcycle was required to further his progress. In 1993, Rossi acquired a Cagiva Mito 125cc motorcycle, which was damaged in a first-corner crash no more than a hundred meters out from pit lane.

The bike was repaired, giving Rossi an opportunity to correct his first-corner mistake, only to crash it going into the second corner. It was an amusing yet trying moment for Rossi, who was hoping to decide whether motorcycles were really for him.

Valentino ended up finishing ninth that race weekend. Although his first season in the Italian Sport Production Championship was varied, he consistently improved his skills, leading to a pole position at the season's final race in Misano, where he ultimately would finish on the podium. By the second year, Rossi had been provided a factory Mito by Cagiva team manager Claudio Lusuardi and cruised to the Italian title.

The World Championship era

In 1994, Aprilia by way of Sandroni had found a new young talent in Valentino Rossi and proceeded to use him to improve its RS125R and in turn allowed Vale to learn how to handle the fast new pace of 125cc racing. At first he found himself on a Sandroni in the 1994 Italian championship and continued to ride it through the 1995 European and Italian championships.

Rossi had little success in the 1996 World Championship season, collecting more crashes than anything else, failing to finish five of the season's races. In August, he won his first World Championship Grand Prix at Brno in the Czech Republic on an AGV Aprilia RS125R. By the end of the season, he was in ninth position, plagued with somewhat inconsistent performances, yet showing stunning speed at times. Rossi treated it as a learning process and refined his skills enough to comfortably wrap up the 125cc World Championship in the following 1997 season, winning 11 of the 15 races.

By 1998, the Aprilia RS250 was reaching its pinnacle and had a formidable team of riders in Valentino Rossi, Loris Capirossi and Tetsuya Harada. But even with a fast bike and experienced championship-winning teammates, Rossi struggled in his first season in 250cc. Rossi considered 1998 the toughest year of his career, due to the persistent pressure to perform that he felt from Aprilia, the media and effectively everyone around him. The death of two of his friends in a car accident also took a toll. Again, he found himself learning the ways of his new bike in the first season, concluding the 1998 250cc season in second place, only three points behind the champion Loris Capirossi. In 1999, however, he won the title, collecting 5 pole positions and 9 Grand Prix wins along the way.

Rossi was rewarded in 2000 for his 250cc World Championship by being given a ride with Honda in what was then the ultimate class in World Championship motorcycle racing, 500cc. Jeremy Burgess, part of Honda Racing's brains trust, had shown him the NSR500 and was convinced that the pairing of it with Rossi would bring nothing but success. Retired 500cc World Champion Mick Doohan, who also had Jeremy Burgess as chief engineer, worked with Rossi as his personal mentor in the first year at Honda. It would also be the first time Rossi would be racing against fierce rival, Max Biaggi. Although the two had never raced against each other, an intense rivalry had developed due to Rossi's arrogant yet loveable nature and Biaggi's proud, king-of-the-hill persona. The media naturally escalated things, printing any juicy gossip they heard, be it alleged or real. Rossi proceeded to showcase the NSR500's strengths, constantly using his analytical mind to refine it even further. It would take nine races before Rossi would win on the Honda, but like his previous seasons in 125 and 250, it was inevitable that 2000 would be a warm-up to a dominant second season. Vale finished 2nd to American Kenny Roberts Jr, with Max Biaggi finishing in 3rd place.

Rossi stormed home to an overwhelming World Championship in 2001, winning 11 races, including the first three and the final four of the season. It would be the final 500cc season not just for Rossi but for everyone.

Also in 2001, Rossi teamed with American rider Colin Edwards for the Suzuka 8 Hours endurance race aboard a Honda VTR1000SPW. The pair won the race despite Rossi's "lack" of experience racing Superbikes.

MotoGP

Rossi riding his Honda RC211V MotoGP bike.

2001 had turned out to be the swansong for the 500cc World Championship; the 500cc giving way to the newly created MotoGP class. The two-stroke 500cc were rapidly being replaced by four-stroke 990cc engines, allowing the factories to provide their riders with staggeringly fast motorbikes. Honda outfitted their factory riders with the RC211V, a liquid-cooled V5 four-stroke with traditionally odd aerodynamic aesthetics but phenomenal speed.

2002 was the inaugural year for the MotoGP bikes and with all riders experiencing the same teething problems getting used to the new bikes (or dealing with the inferior 500cc bikes), it was all Rossi needed to grasp the Championship with two hands from the very first race and never let go of it. Rossi won an astounding 8 of the first 9 races of the season, eventually claiming 11 victories in total.

It was more of the same in 2003 for Rossi's rivals; Rossi claimed 9 pole positions as well as 9 GP wins to his third consecutive World Championship. The Australian GP at Phillip Island in 2003 is considered to be one of Rossi's greatest career moments due to the unique circumstances in which he claimed victory. After being given a 10-second penalty for overtaking during a yellow flag due to a crash by Ducati rider Troy Bayliss, 1st-place Rossi proceeded to pull away from the rest of the field, eventually finishing more than 15 seconds ahead; more than enough to cancel out the penalty and win the race.

From Honda to Yamaha

There was much speculation during the second half of the 2003 season about Rossi's plans for the future. Most suspected that he would succeed in his bid to claim a third consecutive title and wondered where the amazingly talented Italian would go in the future. There were even rumors that he would attempt a career in rally cars after he had competed in a Peugeot 206 WRC rally car at the 2002 Rally of Great Britain (although he crashed the car into a tree). His contract with Honda was up at the end of the year and there were rumors that Rossi had become somewhat disillusioned with his ride at Honda. His tenure at Honda had effectively run its course; he had provided Honda with a 500cc World Championship as well as consecutive MotoGP World Championships, he had helped perfect the RC211V into a formidable, almost unstoppable racing machine and considering Honda's reluctance to pay top dollar to secure his services in 2004, seemed to have overstayed his welcome.

Partnered with increased skepticism that the reason for his success was the dominance of the RC211V rather than Rossi's talent, it was inevitable that Honda and Rossi would part. Mid-season rumors pointed towards a possible move to Ducati, which sent the Italian press into a frenzy; the concept of the great Italian on the great Italian bike seemed too good to be true. Ducati did indeed try to seduce Rossi into riding their MotoGP bike, the Desmosedici, but for numerous reasons Rossi passed the offer up. Critics say that compared to the other manufacturers, Ducati had a significant way to go before being competitive even with Rossi at the helm. This proved to be the truth with Ducati's lacklustre performance in the 2004 season, which had actually been worse than their inaugural year in MotoGP in 2003.

In his 2005 autobiography, "What If I'd Never Tried It?", Rossi offers another reason for choosing Yamaha over Ducati, saying that the mindset at Ducati Corse was a little too similar to the one he was trying to escape from at Honda.

Ultimately, Rossi signed a two-year contract with rivals Yamaha reportedly worth in excess of USD$12 million; a price no other manufacturer, even Honda, was willing to pay.


Rossi's move to Yamaha would be a baptism of fire. His fiercest critics claimed that on an inferior machine (the Yamaha YZR-M1), Rossi would not be able to recreate his World Championship wins of the previous years, especially with increased development of the RC211V and the likes of Max Biaggi and Sete Gibernau on Hondas. The RC211V was a superior machine in almost every aspect although it was guaranteed that the gap would shrink with the defection of Rossi and Jeremy Burgess (chief mechanic for Rossi at Honda, whom Rossi had also convinced to join). The 2004 season would give Rossi the ability to show everyone, especially his critics what he was made of and provide him with an opportunity to prove that it was his talent rather than his bike that won him his championships.

With the traditional first race of the season at Suzuka off the list due to safety considerations, the 2004 season started at Welkom in South Africa. Rossi shone through to claim first blood in his new team colors and somewhat silenced some of his critics who thought the Yamaha would still play second fiddle to the Honda. Rossi would go on to claim 8 more GP wins during the season, battling Sete Gibernau ferociously until Rossi eventually closed the door on Sete's hopes in the penultimate race of the season at Phillip Island. Gibernau and Rossi had become bickering enemies during the course of the season; whereas in previous seasons they had been competitive but friendly rivals, various disputes arose during 2004 which led to their falling apart. Rossi would continue to rub salt into the wound for both Gibernau and Honda by winning the ultimate race of the season at Valencia. It was a painful blow to both Gibernau and Honda; Gibernau, so close to a World Championship, and Honda, starting to become aware of what they had let go. Valentino Rossi ended up with 304 points to Gibernau's 257, with Max Biaggi 3rd with 217 points.

In 2005, Rossi captured his 7th World Championship and 5th straight MotoGP Championship. He finished with a total of 367 points, an incredible 147 points ahead of 2nd place finisher Marco Melandri (220 pt), and Nicky Hayden finishing 3rd with 206 points.

File:2006 Valencia Motogp.JPG
Rossi congratulates Hayden on the 2006 MotoGP title.

The 2006 MotoGP season started off with Rossi, once again, being the favorite to take the Championship, but he had trouble in the first half of the season. Rossi finished 14th in Jerez, making an amazing comeback after Toni Elias pushed him at the very first corner, and had a pair of DNFs in Shanghai and Le Mans due to tyre and electronic problems respectively. Nicky Hayden held the points lead throughout most of the season, but Rossi was slowly working his way up the points ladder. It wasn't until Motegi when Rossi finally grabbed 2nd in the points race behind Hayden. In the Portuguese Grand Prix, the second to last race of the season, Hayden was taken out by his teammate, Dani Pedrosa, and did not finish the race. This led to Rossi taking the points lead with only one race left in the season. Rossi crashed early in Valencia, the last race, and Hayden went on to win the 2006 MotoGP Championship. Rossi finished the season in 2nd place.

Valentino Rossi will return to MotoGP for the 2007 season riding the new Yamaha YZR-M1 800cc. In the first race in Qatar he came second to Casey Stoner, mainly due to the superior straight line speed of Stoner's Ducati

In the second round of the season Rossi won the Race with Dani Pedrosa in second place and Colin Edwards in third giving both Yamaha riders podiums.

Intense rivalries

Earlier in his career Max Biaggi was, for all intents and purposes, considered Rossi's arch-nemesis. At one time his website didn't even have Max's name; instead a glaring "XXX XXXXXX" was placed wherever his name should have appeared. Although they hadn't even raced against each other until 2000, the rivalry between the two had been growing since the mid-'90s. Rossi has always considered himself a better rider than Biaggi and the Roman has always considered himself far superior to the clown prince. The rivalry has started to die down over recent years due to Vale's consecutive World Championships and Biaggi's struggle to find support and a consistent rhythm with his races. Biaggi looked to improve on recent results with a ride with Honda's factory team in 2005. However, he was off the team and unemployed once the 2006 season rolled around.

In his autobiography "What If I Had Never Tried It", Rossi makes a number of claims about the reasons for his rivalry with Biaggi, and some of the incidents which led to its escalation.

Rossi largely blames the media and their desire to publicise a rivalry between the pair for the eventual severity of the rivalry. Any quotes that the media got out of the pair were twisted and made to seem far more serious and insulting than they had been meant. Rossi also says that he is simply too honest. He had merely disagreed with the claims Biaggi made about why he wasn't winning races - Biaggi blamed the bike, the tyres, the engine, and Rossi felt that Biaggi should have accepted that sometimes he was the one at fault. They simply have very different outlooks on motorcycle racing, dealing with the media, and life in general. When the media get involved, it is basically a recipe for disaster.

During one incident at Suzuka in 2001, Rossi alleges that Biaggi elbowed him on the straightway at 220kmph to prevent him from overtaking. This caused Rossi to lose a lot of time and drop several places, but he managed to make up the time and eventually overtook Biaggi to win the race. As he overtook Biaggi, he took his left hand from the handlebars of his bike and gave Biaggi the middle-finger. The press, according to Rossi, took Biaggi's side as usual, and excused Biaggi's elbow as necessary - Rossi's overtaking move had been dangerous and Biaggi had to intervene to prevent a collision. Rossi was vilified for the "vulgar gesture", and he felt that this was entirely unfair.

By the time the 2001 season had moved to Barcelona, the animosity from Suzuka had festered and been built up so much by the media that it threatened to blow out of control. After the race (which Rossi won), the pair got into a fist-fight before the podium presentation. The tension was evident in the press conference, although the media hadn't yet found out what had happened. The Dorna officials took Rossi and Biaggi aside immediately after the press conference and ordered them not to talk about the incident, and to play it down. Neither rider was sanctioned for the incident. Rossi maintains that afterwards he kept his word and didn't speak to the journalists, but Biaggi apparently broke his word and talked to the journalists.

At the next Grand Prix in Assen, Honda organised a press conference to put the events of Barcelona behind them. Rossi and Biaggi shook hands in front of the media, and that effectively ended the feud. After that, although they have had run-ins on track, the media frenzy surrounding them and any incidents off-track calmed down.

Rossi's main rival in the 2004/2005 seasons was Sete Gibernau, riding with Team Gresini's Movistar Honda team on a satellite RC211V in 2004 and then on an all but in name factory RC211V, which Gibernau helped to develop, in 2005. Initially they were quite friendly in the paddock and off - Gibernau partied on occasions with Rossi at the Italian's Ibiza villa - but a souring in their relationship began in the 2004 season and culminated in the "Qatar Incident" that same season when Rossi's team was penalized for "cleaning" his grid position to aid in traction, along with Honda Pons'Max Biaggi, and both riders were subsequently forced to start from the back of the grid. A number of teams, including Gibernau's Team Gresini and the official Respol Honda factory team, appealed successfully to race direction for Rossi to be sanctioned. Rossi and his chief mechanic, Jeremy Burgess, insisted that they were doing nothing more than what many others had done before when faced with a dirty track and Rossi accused Gibernau of being behind the move to appeal for a sanction, something the Spaniard categorically denied. Since then the two have not spoken and Rossi seemed to resolve to use the incident to apply psychological pressure on Gibernau. He is said to have sworn that after the Qatar race, which Gibernau won while Rossi crashed out after rising to 6th position , he would do everything to make sure that Gibernau never stand on the highest step of the podium again. This determination on the part of Rossi might go some way towards explaining his harsh inside passing manouever on Gibernau in the final corner of the first round race of the 2005 MotoGP World Championship at Jerez, which resulted in a Rossi win and Sete claiming second after they both touched and Gibernau was forced into the gravel. The Movistar Honda rider was visibly displeased, with clearly unhappy body language during post-race celebrations and a terse response in the post-race press conference. Rossi offered a handshake to Sete which he accepted. Rossi said in the post-race press conference that he understood that Sete was angry but that at the end of the day, "these are the races." Gibernau remained visibly angry, but sportingly said that he simply wanted to move on to the next race and not get caught up in the feud. As a comparison, a very similar incident occurred at the Qatar GP of 2004 when Rossi collided with Alex Barros when Rossi attempted to outbrake the Brazilian into the first corner, after colliding with Barros he instantly raised his hand in apology.

Gibernau retired from Grand Prix racing after an unsuccessful, injury blighted 2006 season with Ducati and he never won another race after Qatar, prompting some in the Spanish and Italian motorcycle racing media to explain this fact by way of reference to the "Qatar curse".

Nicknames

Valentino Rossi has had numerous nicknames during his racing career. His first prominent nickname was "Rossifumi." Rossi explained the etymology of this nickname as a reference and tribute to fellow rider Norifumi Abe.

His next nickname appeared some time around his days racing in the 250cc World Championship. The nickname "Valentinik" was a reference to the Italian Donald Duck superhero, "Paperinik."

Since his dominance in 500cc and MotoGP, Rossi has used the nickname "The Doctor." This has been attributed to his "cold and clinical dismantling of his opponents" as well as his cool and calm composure in racing compared to his frenetic days in 125cc and 250cc where his performance was erratic and dangerous, resulting in numerous crashes. There are two theories as to why Rossi is entitled "The Doctor", one is Rossi adopted the nickname upon having earned a degree, which in Italy entitles one to use the title "Doctor". Another, as spoken by Graziano himself, "The Doctor because, I don't think there is a particular reason, but it's beautiful, and is important, The Doctor. And in Italy, The Doctor is a name you give to someone for respect, it's very important, The Doctor... important". Although Valentino often jokes that the name arrived because in Italy, Rossi is a very common surname for Doctors. These days Rossi rarely crashes and in fact holds the record for the longest streak of consecutive podiums. From September 8 2002 to April 18 2004, he stood on the podium at the end of all 23 races including every race in 2003.

He has always raced with the number #46 in his motorcycle grand prix career. Rossi has stated that the original inspiration for this choice of number was a Japanese "wild card" racer whom he saw on television speeding past much more seasoned riders in a wet race. He later found out that it was the number his father had raced with in the first of his 3 grand prix career wins, in 1979, in Yugoslavia, on a 250c Morbidelli. Typically, a World Championship winner (and also runner-up and third place) is awarded the #1 sticker for the next season. However in an homage to Barry Sheene (who was the first rider of the modern era to keep the same number), Rossi has stayed with the now-famous #46 throughout his career. The text on his helmet refers to the name of his group of friends: "The Tribe of the Chihuahua", and the letters WLF on his leathers stand for "Viva La Figa" or "Long Live Pussy". He has so far escaped any sanctions or ultimatums that he take the letters off because of the "W" for the first letter. Readily apparent is the "W" standing for the two "V"s in "ViVa", and equally obvious is his success at escaping any disciplinary action from the FIM or Dorna for having the letters so brazenly on the front neck of his leathers. He traditionally also incorporates his favorite color (fluorescent yellow) into his leather designs. Up until the 2007 season, Rossi wore the #1 reserved for the reigning World Champion on the shoulder of his racing leathers.

Rossi now lives in Piccadilly Circus, London, England.

Plans for the future

Rossi has signed a contract with Yamaha to continue racing the premier class through the 2008 season. Rumors abound speculating Rossi will switch from two wheels to four wheels some time in the next few years. These rumors continue to gain momentum following his recent test of the Ferrari Formula One racecar [2], his second test of the car to date. Times from the test at the private circuit in Fiorano, Italy had Rossi approximately 3 seconds back of Michael Schumacher's outright lap record.

Rossi tested the Ferrari in 2006 on January 31, February 1, and February 2 at Valencia. The first day saw Rossi spin out on the damp track into the gravel trap ending his day. On the second day, he posted the ninth fastest time of fifteen drivers, approximately one second behind Schumacher, who himself was third fastest. Rossi lapped faster than seasoned drivers Mark Webber, David Coulthard and Jarno Trulli [3]. On the final day of testing, Rossi was just a little more than a half second behind Schumacher's best time [4]. Schumacher hailed Rossi as having immense talent and said he's perfectly capable of moving to Formula One and being competitive immediately.

There are rumors that Ferrari has given Rossi a six month period until mid-2006 to decide if he wants to pick-up Formula One racing. He is confirmed to have more frequent testing opportunities throughout 2006. If Rossi makes the switch to four wheels and should win the World Championship, he would be the second man in history to accomplish the feat behind British racer John Surtees.

Rossi has also expressed a strong passion for rallying, and plans to race a factory Subaru Impreza car in the Rally of Monza in November 2005, the first of three events planned for the European winter. Rossi has often spoken of his love for rallying, leading some to speculate a future move to the World Rally Championship rather than Formula One.

As of May 24, 2006, Rossi announced that he would be staying in MotoGP until he felt his work on the motorbike was "finished". Ferrari driver Schumacher said that he felt "saddened" by Rossi's decision, but supported it. Rossi subsequently signed a new contract with Yamaha for the 2007 season, which will see him, along with the rest of the riders in the "big class", switching to 800cc bikes.

On October 11, 2006 it was announced that Rossi has entered this year's Rally New Zealand, a WRC event which runs from November 17-19 [5]. He competed with a Subaru WRC car finishing 11th place out of 39. This will be his first WRC competition since the 2002 Rally Great Britain, in which he crashed out on the second stage (first non-superspecial stage).

On November 26, Rossi also won the annual Monza Rally driving a Ford Focus WRC car. He beat the 2005 rally victor Rinaldo Capello by 24 seconds, winning five of the seven stages on his way. He also managed to outpace former WRC Champion Didier Auriol by seven seconds in the head-to-head Master Show final. Rossi also announced at the Monza rally, he will be entering the 2007 Rally of Great Britain.

Equipment, symbols and superstitions

Helmets

Valentino Rossi has gone through numerous helmet designs throughout his career, most featuring the Sun & Moon motif, signifying (according to Rossi) the two sides of his personality.

Superstitions

Rossi is a very superstitious person and his pre-ride rituals are well known. Prior to riding (whether racing, qualifying, or practice), he will crouch down next to the bike, holding the footrest, with his head bowed. It is not known whether he is in silent prayer, if he is getting in the correct frame-of-mind needed to ride, or paying respect to a fellow racer, family member, or friend. He can also be observed adjusting the fit of his leathers shortly before the start of the race; this may merely be a matter of comfort, which has become a much-commented upon habit. He also revealed in an interview with MotoGP.com that he always puts one boot on before the other, one glove on before the other, and he always gets on the bike the same way. He also spends time with his bike in the garage the night before a race checking the positions of all the stickers.

Career statistics

By Seasons

Seas Class Moto Race Win Pod Pole FLap Pts Plcd WCh
1996 125cc Aprilia RS125 15 1 2 1 2 111 9th 0
1997 125cc Aprilia RS125 15 11 13 4 7 321 1st 1
1998 250cc Aprilia RS250 14 5 9 0 3 201 2nd 0
1999 250cc Aprilia RS250 16 9 12 5 8 309 1st 1
2000 500cc Honda NSR500 16 2 10 0 5 209 2nd 0
2001 500cc Honda NSR500 16 11 13 4 10 325 1st 1
2002 MotoGP Honda RC211V 16 11 15 7 9 355 1st 1
2003 MotoGP Honda RC211V 16 9 16 9 12 357 1st 1
2004 MotoGP Yamaha YZR-M1 16 9 11 5 3 304 1st 1
2005 MotoGP Yamaha YZR-M1 17 11 16 5 6 367 1st 1
2006 MotoGP Yamaha YZR-M1 17 5 10 5 4 247 2nd 0
2007 MotoGP Yamaha YZR-M1 2 1 2 1 1 45 - -
Total 174 84 127 46 69 3106 7

By class

Class Seas 1st GP 1st Pod 1st Win Race Win Pod Pole FLap Pts WCh
125cc 1996-1997 1996 Malaysia 1996 Austria 1996 Czech Rep. 30 12 15 5 9 432 1
250cc 1998-1999 1998 Japan 1998 Spain 1998 Dutch 30 14 21 5 11 510 1
500cc 2000-2001 2000 South Af. 2000 Spain 2000 British 32 13 23 4 15 534 1
MotoGP 2002-2006 2002 Japan 2002 Japan 2002 Japan 82 45 68 31 34 1630 4
Total 1996-2006 174 84 127 45 69 3106 7

Races by year

Yr Class Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
1996 125cc Aprilia MAL
6
IND
11
JPN
11
SPA
4
ITA
4
FRA
ret
DUT
ret
GER
5
BRI
ret
AUT
3
CZE
1
IMO
5
CAT
ret
BRA
ret
AUS
14
     
1997 125cc Aprilia MAL
1
JPN
ret
SPA
1
ITA
1
AUT
2
FRA
1
DUT
1
SMR
1
GER
1
BRA
1
BRI
1
CZE
3
CAT
1
IND
1
AUS
6
     
1998 250cc Aprilia JPN
ret
MAL
ret
SPA
2
ITA
2
FRA
2
MAD
ret
DUT
1
BRI
ret
GER
3
CZE
ret
SMR
1
CAT
1
AUS
1
ARG
1
       
1999 250cc Aprilia MAL
5
JPN
7
SPA
1
FRA
ret
ITA
1
CAT
1
DUT
2
BRI
1
GER
1
CZE
1
SMR
2
VAL
8
AUS
1
SAF
1
BRA
1
ARG
3
   
2000 500cc Honda SAF
ret
MAL
ret
JPN
11
SPA
3
FRA
3
ITA
12
CAT
3
DUT
6
BRI
1
GER
2
CZE
2
POR
3
VAL
ret
BRA
1
PAC
2
AUS
3
   
2001 500cc Honda JPN
1
SAF
1
SPA
1
FRA
3
ITA
ret
CAT
1
DUT
2
BRI
1
GER
7
CZE
1
POR
1
VAL
11
PAC
1
AUS
1
MAL
1
BRA
1
   
2002 MotoGP Honda JPN
1
SAF
2
SPA
1
FRA
1
ITA
1
CAT
1
DUT
1
BRI
1
GER
1
CZE
ret
POR
1
BRA
1
PAC
2
MAL
2
AUS
1
VAL
2
   
2003 MotoGP Honda JPN
1
SAF
2
SPA
1
FRA
2
ITA
1
CAT
2
DUT
3
BRI
3
GER
2
CZE
1
POR
1
BRA
1
PAC
2
MAL
1
AUS
1
VAL
1
   
2004 MotoGP Yamaha SAF
1
SPA
4
FRA
4
ITA
1
CAT
1
DUT
1
BRA
ret
GER
4
BRI
1
CZE
2
POR
1
JPN
2
QAT
ret
MAL
1
AUS
1
VAL
1
   
2005 MotoGP Yamaha SPA
1
POR
2
CHN
1
FRA
1
ITA
1
CAT
1
NED
1
USA
3
GBR
1
GER
1
CZE
1
JPN
ret
MAL
2
QAT
1
AUS
1
TUR
2
VAL
3
 
2006 MotoGP Yamaha SPA
13
QAT
1
TUR
4
CHN
ret
FRA
ret
ITA
1
CAT
1
NED
8
GBR
2
GER
1
USA
ret
CZE
2
MAL
1
AUS
3
JPN
2
POR
2
VAL
13
 
2007 MotoGP Yamaha QAT
2
SPA
1
TUR
10
CHN
FRA
ITA
CAT
GBR
NED
GER
USA
CZE
SMR
JPN
AUS
MAL
POR
VAL

Records

500cc/MotoGP records:

  • Rossi is second in all time world championships standings with 5 world championships along with Michael Doohan with 5 world championships, behind Giacomo Agostini with 8 world championships
  • Rossi is second in consecutive world championships standings with 5 consecutive world championships in 2001-2005 along with Michael Doohan with 5 consecutive world championships in 1994-1998, behind Giacomo Agostini with 7 consecutive world championships in 1966-1969
  • Rossi is second in all time race wins standings with 59 race wins, behind Giacomo Agostini with 68 race wins
  • Rossi is second in all time podiums standings with 92 podiums, behind Michael Doohan with 95 podiums
  • Rossi is second in all time pole positions standings with 38 pole positions, behind Michael Doohan with 58 pole positions
  • Rossi is second in all time race fastest laps standings with 49 race fastest laps, behind Giacomo Agostini with 69 race fastest laps
  • Rossi is second in most race wins in a season standings with 11 race wins in 2001, 2002 and 2005, behind Michael Doohan with 12 races wins in 1997


All class records:

  • Rossi is fourth in all time world championships standings with 7 world championships along with Phil Read, behind Carlo Ubbiali and Mike Hailwood with 9 world championships, Angel Nieto with 13 world championships and Giacomo Agostini with 15 world championships
  • Rossi is third in all time race wins standings with 84 race wins, behind Giacomo Agostini with 122 race wins and Angel Nieto with 90 race wins
  • Rossi is third in all time podiums standings with 127 podiums, behind Giacomo Agostini with 159 podiums and Angel Nieto with 139 podiums
  • Rossi is third in all time pole positions standings with 45 pole positions, behind Michael Doohan with 58 pole positions and Max Biaggi with 56 pole positions


Other records:

  • Rossi is the second rider to win consecutive world championships in different manufacturers (2001-2003 with Honda and 2004-2005 with Yamaha along with Eddie Lawson (1988 with Yamaha and 1989 with Honda)
  • Rossi was the first rider to win consecutive races with different manufacturers. He won the final race of 2003 with Honda (Valencia, Spain) and the first race of 2004 with Yamaha (Africa).

External links


Preceded by
Kenny Roberts Jr
500cc/MotoGP Motorcycle World Champion
2001-2005
Succeeded by
Nicky Hayden
Preceded by
Loris Capirossi
250cc Motorcycle World Champion
1999
Succeeded by
Olivier Jacque
Preceded by
Haruchika Aoki
125cc Motorcycle World Champion
1997
Succeeded by
Kazuto Sakata