This weekend's inaugural MotoGP of the Americas should see Valentino Rossi move into second position on the all-time premier-class start list.
Rossi, currently level with compatriot Loris Capirossi, made his premier-class debut in the opening 500cc race of the 2000 season at the Welkom circuit in South Africa. This year is his 14th in the top category of motorcycle grand prix racing.
The Italian's present Yamaha MotoGP contract runs until the end of the 2014 season, by which time Rossi should easily overtake record holder Alex Barros.
The following table shows the ten riders with the most premier-class starts. Rossi is one of three riders on the list, alongside Americans Colin Edwards and Nicky Hayden, still racing in MotoGP.
Meanwhile, Rossi's second place at the Qatar Grand Prix means he has now claimed at least one podium for 14 successive seasons in the premier-class. A new record. Giacomo Agostini managed at least one podium for 13 successive seasons.
1 Alex Barros 245
=2. Loris Capirossi 217
=2. Valentino Rossi 217
4 Carlos Checa 194
5 Colin Edwards 169
6 Nicky Hayden 168
7 Kenny Roberts Jr. 167
8 Sete Gibernau 160
9 Jack Findlay 157
10 Randy Mamola 145