20 May 2014
Marquez: Rossi will be 22 again at home MotoGP!
"I think in Mugello Valentino will be 22 years old again!" - Marc Marquez.
Valentino Rossi insists Marc Marquez's total 2014 MotoGP domination isn't a 'big problem' for him personally.
The 21-year-old reigning champion has won all five races from pole position, including a fight back from tenth place to beat Rossi at Le Mans on Sunday.
It marked the third time that Rossi has finished runner-up to the young Repsol Honda star this year.
“Personally I'm in a situation where, for sure I want to win, but it's not a big problem for me [that Marquez is unbeaten],” said Rossi, who re-joined Yamaha from Ducati last season.
“Because I come from last year, and especially two and three years ago, where my results were a lot worse. So, I'm so happy about my work,” added the 35-year-old Italian, currently third and the top Yamaha rider in the world championship standings.
Rossi's only regret is that he can't turn back the clock and take on Marquez as a 22-year-old - when Rossi won the first of his seven premier-class titles in the former 500cc class.
“You know, Marquez is clearly at the top. I understood this already last year. I say, 'F**k it's difficult, I have to fight with him when I was 22!',” Rossi smiled. “But anyway it's also good motivation because the level is so high and if you want to try to beat him you have to give more than 100 percent.”
Referring to Rossi's upcoming home event, Marquez responded: “In these five races I had the level, but I think in Mugello Valentino will be 22 years old again! He will again be so fast and will push a lot.
“Of course now we are in a very good moment, but we cannot forget we are in the best championship with the best riders. It looks easy from the outside, but inside the pit box we know how we need to work and we push a lot every practice.”
Marquez holds a 42 point championship lead over Dani Pedrosa heading to Mugello, with Rossi two points further behind.
Rossi was unbeaten at his home race from 2002-2008, with team-mate Jorge Lorenzo winning the Italian round for Yamaha for the last three years.
Marquez suffered his only race fall of last season at Mugello, costing him a safe second place. The rookie had already suffered three accidents in practice - most notably in FP2, when he lost control at the end of the 200mph home straight, leaving him with an injured shoulder and damaged chin.
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