One of the reasons why Valentino Rossi is considered the greatest.
Even after a season crushing injury, Rossi wants to ride till his last breath.by Sagar Patil, on
To become the most successful human being of motorsport’s biggest game is a feat that takes an entire lifetime of belief and sacrifice. And of course, all the talent one can fathom think of. Luckily for an Italian bloke called Valentino Rossi, it’s all in his blood.
Starting his career in 1996, the Italian legend has until now swiped nine Grand Prix World Championships to his name and is still running hard to become the best rider in the MotoGP world.
Just when the current season was looking good for Rossi, the champion suffered a huge blow to his run due to injuries on his leg during an enduro training accident. It put him out of the race for him to claim another title. But he says he is not done with it yet.
Fractures of the tibia and fibula saw the rider undergo surgery that threatened him to miss at least two race weekends of this calendar season. After missing his home event at Misano GP, it looked like his championship was over for Rossi with his dream of the tenth championship title.
But because of the champion that he is, Rossi showed great levels of commitment and attitude and within a span of 20 days, and he went on to riding the Yamaha R1-M for close to 20 laps at Misano this week. Coming out of it, he and the team felt confident that he had an improved feeling and a positive impression of Rossi’s rideability.
For sure he wasn’t trying to prove anyone but himself.
This stunt led him and his team to believe in reviving this season’s plan and heading to the next MotoGP venue (14th of the season) that will take place in the coming weekend: Motorland Aragon GP. There he will be evaluated of his fitness by the circuit doctors where Rossi needs to demonstrate that his leg will be capable of handling the strains of riding the MotoGP bike at full limits.
Rossi’s replacement, Michael van der Mark will also travel to Aragon, as originally planned, but the Dutchman will initially be on standby in case Rossi can’t ride even after FP3, which is just 2 hours before qualifying.
Rossi has already decided to ride on the MotoGP machine at FP1 on Friday where he will attempt to run the bike through its paces which will give him a chance to assess his leg’s condition for himself. Gear manufacturer Dainese has provided the rider with a specially reinforced cast for his leg, and a bespoke boot for enhanced support.
If you still haven’t figured why Rossi wants to ride and risk another injury that could end his career, let’s just say that the zeal and the drive are what separates champions like him from us; who would rather sit at home and feel sorry for ourselves.
Even though it is evident that Rossi might end up closer to the tenth place than the podium, it is important for him to be alive in the championship.
Currently, Rossi is 42 points behind in the championship and is bound to lose another 10-15 points in the coming few races because of this injury fiasco. This will give his rival Marc Marquez a better chance at this season’s title.
For Rossi to have 50-60 odd points less than him is better than nothing at all. At least Rossi will be in a position to take any opportunity if and when it comes (may be in the form of Marc’s DNFs’) which will not otherwise from the comfort of his bed at home.
What if Rossi gets another injury to his leg? Wouldn’t that be more devastating? Yes, it will. Rossi won’t be then able to compete in the entire season nor ride a motorcycle for months together. But the team is thinking about the bigger picture here.
It will easily be another six months for the 2018 season to begin at Qatar GP which will give a pro athlete like Rossi sufficient time to recover. Pre-season tests at Sepang will also be possible for Rossi, and that is all everyone wants; to see Rossi there.
To think of it, every rider who lines up at the start of every race knows the risks he is willing to take up. It is a work-hazard for these guys, and they do it with a smile. And Rossi is above everyone there to come out of a career-threatening injury, and not just to give up. He is tremendously driven and motivated to put down his fears and race again.
Not saying other riders aren’t, they are equally competitive, and that is why they are riding on the MotoGP calendar. But Rossi has time and again proved his worth, be it his scuffs with other riders or with his injuries.
He might not have many more chances to get his tenth championship title, and he surely doesn’t want this season to go down without a fight. This is him showing all his metal.
Beliefs and sacrifices. Aren’t those with what champions are made?
We know Rossi is. The DOCTOR
Here is another example of what made him the greatest rider on the face of the planet: VR-46.