For the millions of Filipino motorcycle racing fans, the name Valentino Rossi is almost synonymous with the world of MotoGP, and his signature “Vale Yellow” racing color can be found on many helmets, riding gear, and even motorcycle decals.
But, have you ever asked what’s the story behind Rossi’s signature color? His long-time friend and helmet designer explains.
“Valentino raced in the minibikes with the helmet of Kevin Schwantz, who was my rider. I also designed the world champion helmet,” said Aldo Drudi, who is the designer of Valentino Rossi’s helmet liveries.
Drudi added, Kevin Schwantz’s helmet had a fluorescent yellow graphic behind it, and during those years in the early 2000s, the color was gaining popularity among enthusiasts. “If you remember behind that helmet there was a fluorescent yellow flash, the fluorescent colors had exploded in those years.”
During his younger days in MotoGP, The Doctor – as Rossi is called, has always cited Schwantz as one of his favorite riders, and, as Drudi explains, Rossi has kept that signature fluorescent yellow as his signature color as he rose through the ranks, regardless of manufacturer, throughout his GP racing career.
As The Doctor transitioned from motorcycle to GT Racing – trading his MotoGP racebike to a souped-up Audi R8 – his signature Vale Yellow and “46” will be proudly displayed on the supercar’s livery.