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By Movistar Yamaha MotoGP

Rossi: “There are always so many of my friends and fans”

Valentino Rossi isn’t about to let a sea of yellow fans distract him from the ultimate goal: winning in Mugello.

Rossi’s magnificent seven at Mugello

Starting the weekend well has become a major factor in Valentino Rossi’s performance. Struggling to find a good base setting early ruled him out of contention for victory in Le Mans and avoiding making the same mistake in Mugello will be a crucial part of the Gran Premio d'Italia TIM. It’s not just Rossi’s home round but it’s also one where he has gone incredibly well at in the past, taking seven back-to-back wins from 2002 to 2008 in the MotoGP™ World Championship. Since his victory in 2008 he has been unable to return to the top step of the podium, taking third on three occasions since. 12 points back on his Movistar Yamaha MotoGP teammate, Jorge Lorenzo, in the championship battle; it’s still a wide open championship as Rossi once again hunts for his tenth world title.

I‘ve had some victories here, many great battles and a lot of good memories. Valentino Rossi

Mugello will also see the first of Rossi’s custom one-off helmets, always holding a deeper meaning than appears at first glance. Everything from Italian singers to pasta has graced Rossi’s helmet in Mugello, the ‘screamer’ edition standing out as a fan favourite. As is tradition the helmet will be revealed on Saturday just before Free Practice 3, be sure to keep an eye out for the new design when the session begins at 09:55 Local Time.

Valentino Rossi: “I love Mugello and its atmosphere. It's very difficult for me to keep my concentration here because there are always so many of my friends and fans around, but the Mugello race is also special for me for that reason. I‘ve had some victories here, many great battles and a lot of good memories. I think this year we can be competitive because our bike is good and I‘m getting into a good shape. At the Le Mans GP we arrived late at achieving the right set up for the race, at Mugello we will not make this mistake again. After Le Mans I‘m relaxed and now I‘m ready to try to attain the maximum level of concentration for the Mugello GP.”