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Motorcycle News is reporting that Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) looks likely to remain in MotoGP™ past the end of his current contract – which ends in 2018 – and sign a new deal to race on. The ‘Doctor’, who turns 39 during the Official Test in Thailand in February, previously stated he wouldn’t make a decision on the future until after the first few races of the season. But after teammate Maverick Viñales revealed during the 2018 Team Presentation that he himself had signed to remain with Yamaha for another two years, the talk about Rossi’s future has intensified once again.
This is what the rider from Tavullia told MCN: “I spoke to Lin Jarvis last week and he told me that Maverick had signed a deal. Sometimes I’ve signed before my teammate, sometimes after – but I still want to wait and see what happens. We’re quite ready to sign when I decide though, and we won’t have to discuss the contract for long if I do decide to stay. We’re not in a rush, but we are confident and we are optimistic.”
The tone certainly sounds positive – and MCN also reports that Team Manager Massimo Meregalli is sure the number 46 won’t be disappearing from the paddock any time soon. Rossi adds a few further thoughts around the topic talking about his age, too – saying that, in reality, it hasn’t changed the equation for some time.
“I’m not getting any younger;” admits the Italian. “But in reality, for the last six or seven years I’ve felt very similar. It’s different from when I was 24 or 25 for sure, because it was a lot easier to recover back then. For sure I have to work hard, but the reality of our sport is that being fit is not the most important thing as it is in other sports.”
Will Rossi race on? See what some of those around him think:
Will Rossi continue in MotoGP™ beyond 2018?