It looks like Valentino Rossi may still have a future in MotoGP. And that future may be with his own team created for discovering and developing young talent, the VR46 Team.
For some time now, Rossi's VR46 Team has been competing in the Moto2 class. However, they recently confirmed that they’ll be moving up to the MotoGP premier class in the 2022 racing season. The VR46 team will take over both of Avintia’s grid slots as the Spanish outfit gets ready to depart MotoGP at the end of the season. Not only that, the VR46 Team has signed a deal with a new principal sponsor, Saudi-based Aramco energy company, which distributes oil products in large parts of Asia. They will also use Ducati bikes for three years. They will still maintain their Moto2 team.
One of the bikes will be ridden by Rossi’s half-brother, Luca Marini. However, reports says that the second rider, Marini’s teammate, has yet to be decided. Some reports from sources close the camp say that the seat is being saved specifically for non-other than Rossi himself.
This development comes after Rossi hinted about his MotoGP retirement and is exploring racing cars in 2022.
However, there is one very influential personality that wants him to stay in MotoGP; none other than the man behind the new primary sponsor, the Saudi Prince himself.
“Always the Prince (HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah Al Saud) pushes on me to race next year with my team and Ducati…” says Rossi. “At the moment, I think it will be very difficult. We spoke sometimes and he always push me for ride next year.” The Doctor wants to think it over first until at least the end of this racing season.
“I still haven’t decided. I will think more deeply in this break. I also have to speak with Yamaha and the team. We want to try for better performance and better result for sure,” added Rossi.
For now, it is still difficult to determine for certain what’s going on in The Doctor’s mind, whether he will continue to race motorcycles or will try out racing cars again. Whatever it is, we wish him all the best.
“The start of the season until this moment was not fantastic under this point of view. I think it will be very difficult also that I race next year,” said Rossi.