MotoGP: Valentino Rossi hopeful of more Estoril success

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Valentino Rossi is confident that he can notch another Estoril victory this weekend to end his worst barren run in MotoGP since his rookie year in 2000.

The Portuguese circuit was one of only four tracks on which the factory Yamaha rider managed to claim a victory in during a nightmare 2007 campaign.

When he beat Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner in one of the few close scraps of last season, Valentino Rossi’s Yamaha YZR-M1 ran on Michelin tyres.

Now on Bridgestone rubber, the seven-times world champion is still brimming with confidence that he can repeat his success.

The Italian, who hasn’t claimed a victory since he won in Estoril, told MCN: “Looking at Jerez and the performance of the tyres I think it is not impossible to win again in Estoril, so I am quite confident.

“I expect Michelin to be competitive because last year Dani and me beat Casey in the last laps.

“We are competitive but now to win you have to make the perfect race with a good start with a good pace right from the start, so it will be difficult.”

The 29-year-old though, who scored his 100th premier class podium finish with second place in Jerez, reckons he will paying more attention to his pit board this weekend.

Valentino Rossi was lucky not surrender second in Jerez when he wrongly started celebrating a lap before the end of the race having miscounted the number of laps remaining.

Rossi told MCN: “That was incredible. It was the first time it happened to me in my career and I was very lucky I didn’t lose any positions.

“I was crazy but I was also quick to understand it wasn’t the last lap.

“Now the numbers on the board will be bigger! It is possible to laugh because we didn’t lose second place, but it would have been a nightmare and I won’t be making the same mistake again.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt