One last dance before the curtain comes down

Valentino Rossi will bring an end to his incredible 25-year career in Grand Prix racing at this weekend’s Valencia MotoGP.

Nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi is set for the final MotoGP race of his career this weekend.

Rossi, who finished 13th – one place behind his brother Luca Marini in Portimao, secured his third consecutive points finish, albeit none were higher than the 12th place of Misano.

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But despite 2021 being by far his worst season in the premier class – the only one without a podium thus far, Rossi will leave a mark on the sport like no other.

Whether it’s his appeal to the fans, incredible performances like Laguna Seca (2008), Catalunya (2009) or Silverstone (2015) just to name a few, or fierce rivalries with the likes of Sete Gibernau, Max Biaggi, Casey Stoner, Jorge Lorenzo and most notably Marc Marquez, Rossi has without doubt been the capitalist in making MotoGP as global as it is today.

Speaking ahead of what’s clearly ‘a special weekend’ in the 42 year-old’s career, Rossi said: “Valencia is always a special weekend and can be a difficult race in different aspects, especially as it is always the final round of the year – apart from last year when we ended in Portugal.

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“However, it is somewhere that I have had some very good times. I’m hoping that we have some good weather there so that we can focus on ending the final race in the top-15 and take some more points.

“Although it will be my last race in MotoGP I feel normal and I think that’s okay, especially as this has been a very long season; maybe the days after the weekend will be different this year, but we will see.

“I hope that I will have the chance to say ‘ciao’ to my fans in a good way and to say thank you for the support.”

From 2022 onwards Rossi will be embarking on a four-wheel career, however, it’s still to be announced what championship and with what manufacturer.

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