Valentino Rossi has set himself the target of returning to MotoGP action at the German Grand Prix next weekend, but admits that he has some way to go in terms of being fit to ride competitively.
The Fiat Yamaha Team rider made his tough assessment after riding a motorcycle for the first time since breaking his right leg at Mugello on 5 June. The Italian completed 26 laps at Misano late on Wednesday, riding a YZF-R1 provided by the Yamaha World Superbike Team. An initial run of eleven laps at 1830hrs local time produced a best time of 1min 41.0secs, before a second run of 15 laps at 1945hrs saw the seven-time champion lower his benchmark to 1min 38.2secs, but he admitted to having pain in both his leg and his shoulder.
"We made this test in order to understand how we must work from here and to see more or less how I can ride the bike," Rossi noted, "The Superbike was good and great fun to ride, [and] the test was positive, because I can at least ride, but there is a lot more to a MotoGP race than to a test like this one.
"I had some pain in the ankle, the knee and the shoulder but, above all, I lacked strength in the shoulder and a bit of movement in the ankle. I would really like to come back at Sachsenring, but it is still too early to say. We still have twelve days and we must wait and see how much we can improve my condition in the next few days. I really would like to ride at Sachsenring, but we must wait another week before making a decision."
The reigning world champion will now continue with an updated rehabilitation programme and make a decision within the next week as to whether he will ride at the German Grand Prix on the weekend of 18 July.