Valentino Rossi has confirmed talks are underway between himself and Movistar Yamaha for a contract extension that would see him remain with the manufacturer until the end of the 2016 MotoGP season, the nine-time world champion hinting that an announcement is due soon.
The Italian, who celebrates his 300th GP start on home soil at Mugello this weekend, confirmed during the previous event in France that he was keen to begin negotiations for a new contract, raising some speculation that it could be announced this weekend.
However, though Rossi was relatively coy about the details when quizzed on whether a new contract was forthcoming, he simply said talks were underway and that a confirmation is due soon.
“We are speaking,” he said. “We need some time, but not a long time to decide. I hope to continue another two seasons.”
Reflecting on what promises to be an eventful weekend for him as he celebrates reaching 300 GPs at his beloved home circuit, though Rossi is pleased with the landmark – despite the implication it makes him seem old -, he says his strong recent form gives him greater pleasure.
“It is a number that doesn't make me happy because it means I am very old,” he joked. “I am happy to celebrate 300 GPs in Mugello, but I am especially happy to arrive here in good shape with some good races this season.”