MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi hopes that the 2010 season will see a return to the kind of close racing that the premier-class was famous for during the 990cc era.
Rossi took a stunning last-turn victory over Fiat Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo at Catalunya last season, marking the first last lap victory pass since the 800cc era began in 2007.
The Barcelona race was one of three 2009 grands prix (out of 17) won by less than one second, but World Superbike was able to boast no less than nine sub-one-second victories (out of 28) last season.
“First of all, I hope that in 2010 it's possible to see more races like Barcelona last year or Laguna Seca in 2008, because in the past it was the most positive thing about MotoGP,” said Rossi, when Crash.net
asked if he expects to win more or less races in 2010.
“But in the last few years, unfortunately, I don't think we have seen enough battles. So everybody hopes that it will come back like four or five years ago, with closer races and more fighting on the last lap.”
Turning specifically to the number of race wins needed to be champion in 2010, Rossi said it was too difficult to call.
“It's impossible to understand about the number of victories because we have minimum of four riders able to win more than one race. So, it will be important to arrive always at the end, get points and win when possible,” stated the Italian superstar.
Rossi's six 2009 victories was the lowest number he has ever achieved during a title-winning season.
The Doctor's most successful world championship seasons were 1997 (125cc), 2001 (500cc), 2002 (990cc), and 2005 (990cc) when he took eleven race wins.