giovedì 10 aprile 2014

MotoGP: Rossi aiming to build on strong start in USA

Nine-time world champion looking for 'confirmation' in Austin

(ANSA) - Rome, April 10 - Italy's nine-time motorcycling world champion Valentino Rossi has said he is aiming to build on his second-placed finish at the opening race of the MotoGP season in Qatar with another strong showing at Sunday's Grand Prix of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

The 35-year-old Yamaha rider was only fourth in last year's MotoGP standings and often struggled to contend with Honda's world champion Marc Marquez and his fellow Spaniards Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo. Even that was an improvement on his two winless seasons at Italian team Ducati in 2011 and 2012, when some commentators suggested he was past his best.

But now the talk is of a Rossi resurgence after he performed well in pre-season testing with his Yamaha team and finished only 0.259 of a second behind Marquez in Qatar last month after a thrilling duel. "I really want to go to Austin, especially after the first race in Qatar," said Rossi, who returned to Yamaha last year after winning four of his seven premium-class world titles with them between 2004 and 2010. "The season started well but now we need confirmation. "Last year I made one of the worst races of the season in Texas," he added, referring to his sixth-placed finish in 2013. "This year I want to see if we can be competitive everywhere. "Getting a good result in Austin would mean a lot for me and for Yamaha. "It would mean that the direction taken is the right one. "We will try to do our best to be competitive also on the Austin circuit. I'd like to have fun like I did in Qatar". 

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