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27 days ago
By motogp.com

Rossi ready for 2018: “I think we can do better”

At the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team Presentation, the ‘Doctor’ was in the house

Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales were the headliners at the 2018 Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team Presentation in Madrid, and the number 46 spoke at the event about both his 2017 and the year ahead.

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Rossi: "We need to be faster and stronger than last year"

Now entering into his 17th season in the premier class of Grand Prix racing, the rider from Tavullia says the experience helps you learn how to problem solve in the box – but that the secret is something else.

“It’s more or less always the same when you restart in this period,” says Rossi. “More depends on how you feel and your motivation, if you still enjoy riding the motorcycle. But with more experience, you get used to trying to fix all the problems you have during the weekend, so you get to Sunday able to go as fast as possible.”

Then, asked about his preparations for the year ahead, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider also went on to underline the importance of training – despite the risks. “For me, it’s important to continue to train during the season, and it has been especially in the last few seasons – in the gym and on the bike, doing different things. We have our track and we train a lot with flattrack. During the season you have to continue, but do a little less - especially because of the risk of injury. So you have to train as much as you can but with a bit of margin.”

Finally, ready for 2018 and with only a few days to go until the Sepang test gets underway, the number 46 says this period will be key for him and the team this season -  and that he’s sure they can do better than in 2017.

“I think the testing is very important because you can understand what will happen during the season,” affirmed the ‘Doctor’. “Normally during tests you can understand that. We have to work hard I think, because we’re coming from last year which wasn’t the maximum for me or the team. I think we can do better. We have to work a lot on the M1, concentrate on the bike, the electronics and the details to try and be fast and use the tyres better – which I think was the key to the season last year.”

It will soon be time for that work to begin and Sunday funday is apt this week, with pitlane open at Sepang from 10:00 (GMT +8) on the 28th January for the first test of the year.