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Rossi voted best ever

Rossi voted best ever

Rossi voted best ever

Valentino Rossi was voted the best MotoGP World Championship rider of all time in an internet poll hosted by the sport's official website in the wake of his fourth consecutive title success. Some 32,634 fans voted at in the ten days following the Cinzano Australian Grand Prix, with an overwhelming 28,466 of them agreeing that Rossi's achievements this season surpass those of any other rider in the 55-year history of the sport.

The statistics certainly seem to back up the 87.23% majority. With his victory at Phillip Island last Sunday, the Italian took his sixth title in all and his fourth in a row in the MotoGP class. His eighth win of the season also made him the first man to secure the title on a Yamaha since Wayne Rainey in 1992 and set a new record for most wins in a season by a Yamaha rider, beating the previous record of seven held jointly by Rainey in 1990 and Eddie Lawson in 1986 and 1988.

At the opening race of the year in South Africa he became the first rider ever in the 55-year history of Grand Prix racing to take back-to-back victories in the premier-class riding machines from two different manufacturers.

The win at Welkom also made Rossi the first rider in the premier-class since Barry Sheene (1976, 77, 78 & 79) to win the opening race of the season for four years in succession and was the first win for Yamaha in the premier-class since Max Biaggi won in Malaysia in 2002.

Rossi is the seventh rider to take four or more premier-class World Championships. Giacomo Agostini has won the most with eight, followed by Mick Doohan with five and then Geoff Duke, Mike Hailwood, Eddie Lawson and John Surtees with four.

However, of these riders only Giacomo Agostini, Mick Doohan and Mike Hailwood have previously won four time in succession but even they never won back-to-back premier-class titles on different machinery. In fact, the only other rider to achieve this was Lawson, riding a Yamaha in 1988 and a Honda in 1989.

Only Doohan, Agostini and Lawson have scored more premier-class Grand Prix podiums than Rossi, who at the age of 25 has already now won the title on three different types of machinery - V4 two-stroke Honda, V5 four-stroke Honda, inline 4 four-stroke Yamaha.

And with one race still remaining at Valencia this weekend, Rossi has amassed a total of 279 points, already the highest points total ever achieved in the premier-class by a Yamaha rider.


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