Valentino Rossi: ‘Yamaha is my first choice’

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Valentino Rossi has reiterated his desire to remain at Yamaha in 2011 if he opts to delay retirement.

Rossi’s premier class future has already been the subject of frenzied speculation with the 30-year-old hinting that he would seriously contemplate a switch to Ducati at the end of 2010.

Rumour about his future has intensified too with MotoGP’s big four, including Casey Stoner, Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa all out of contract in 2010 adding further intrigue.

But Rossi is confident his future plans will be concluded by June, the same time he agreed his current two-year deal with Yamaha’s factory squad.

He said: “I am very sell situated in Yamaha and obviously that is my first choice.
In any case it is a little embarrassing to talk about where all the riders will be for 2011 when we haven’t even started the 2010 season so I don’t know what is happening.

"I think some time in June or July I will know.  In 2008 I signed in June so this year will be more or less the same time or perhaps things could still be open into until later the summer.

"With all the contracts of the top four riders to end this year this matter will be constantly on the table all season.

"It is a strange coincidence that the four fastest riders will finish their contracts at the same time.

"I imagine that each will do what they think is the best for themselves. As for my future contract it will be Yamaha who I will talk first about this"

Rossi begins his preparations for the defence of his world crown in 2010 on Thursday when winter testing gets underway at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt