Defending world MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi is tipping bitter rival Max Biaggi for the title this year.
The London-based rider speaks out in a world exclusive interview in the Wednesday, February 4 issue of MCN. He knows he's facing his toughest ever season after switching from the all-conquering Honda RCV to the Yamaha M1.
He told MCN: "Max Biaggi has to win the title. It will probably be his last opportunity."
Most manufacturers release former riders to start testing their new bikes when the season ends. But Honda held Rossi to his contract, effectively banning him from riding his new Yamaha until the start of 2004. And Rossi reckons that test ban will have an impact.
"Honda's attitude pissed me off. The testing ban will cost me four races," says Rossi.
For the full exclusive interview see MCN, out Wednesday, February 4.
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Rossi may be downplaying his chances but his most recent test times suggest Biaggi shouldn’t be reaching for his poultry calculator just yet. Click here.
Check back soon for the latest MotoGP test news. The stars head back to Sepang for February 11, 2004.