A 42 year old Italian laborer was arrested on Thursday after allegedly making threats to kill reigning seven time MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi during this weekend's Italian Grand Prix.

According to sportmediaset.it and the ANSA news agency, the man threatened to shoot Rossi, whom he claimed to 'hate', during this weekend's Italian GP.

The threats were made to Rossi's family and friends, as well as to newspapers and TV stations.

Upon his arrest, police said the man's home was found to contain "irrefutable evidence", prompting a confession.

"I want to thank the police," said Rossi. "There is little else to add, except that I'm sorry that someone has so much [hate] without any real reason."