MotoGP: Rossi looking to ‘stay modest’ after Phillip Island

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Valentino Rossi says it’s important for him to stay modest this weekend at the Malaysian Grand Prix despite a stunning result last weekend at Phillip Island, where Rossi came out on top of a three-way Yamaha battle for second place, holding off teammate Maverick Viñales and satellite rider Johann Zarco.

But despite the strong pace that the Italian showed last week at a track that he’s always enjoyed success at, the nine-time world champion says that it’s important to keep emotions in control this weekend when the championship has it’s third of three flyaway races.

“We need to stay modest after the race in Australia. We have worked well and we have taken another step forward, I’m happy about this, but we still have a lot to do. Going straight to Malaysia is important. I don’t expect anything, but we will work hard to make it another nice race. It’s a track that I like a lot and I hope for good weather, so we’ll be able to work in the best way possible. I’m physically okay, in the next few days I’ll rest and next Friday I’ll be ready for another weekend.”

And that’s a view echoed by his teammate, with Viñales keen to build on the success of last weekend without getting carried away.

“After the podium in Australia we are very motivated to go to Malaysia, it’s a circuit with very different climate conditions to those we’ve had on Phillip Island and in Japan – it’s always very hot and that makes it a very physically demanding race. The bike is working very good now, so it’s a little bit disappointing to arrive in Sepang without the mathematical possibility to win the title, but now securing second place in the standings is our target. We have to try to be as strong as we were at the beginning of the season and be on the podium again in Sepang. We will work hard to achieve it.”

Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer