10 September 2015
MotoGP Misano: Rossi, Lorenzo talk chances of Misano showdown
“Yes, this can be the right track for a good battle” - Valentino Rossi.
Title leaders Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo may have won nine out of twelve MotoGPs this season, but they are yet to fight each other for victory at the end of a race.
Might that change at Misano this weekend?
In the last eight years, Lorenzo has taken four wins at the Italian circuit, with three for home hero Rossi.
“Yes, it's possible because the three times that I won I always fight with Jorge. When he won, I was always more behind! But yes, it can be,” said Rossi, who beat Lorenzo by 1.5s at Misano last season.
“You know, we have a very different way to race, no? Between me and Jorge. Usually when he is strong, he is very fast from the first corner and after it is difficult to try to fight. But yes, this can be the right track for a good battle.”
Lorenzo added: “I don't know why I like more when someone wins with more advantage, than races where second place is close to the winner! But yeah, I hope this time it can happen.
“For sure it is going to be difficult because Marc is going to be very strong, Valentino is always very fast here, has won many times and it's his home track. But it's also one of my favourite tracks and I'm very motivated to start and get a good set-up for the bike.
“A good fight until the end could happen and I think I'm prepared to do it.”
Rossi is currently twelve points ahead of Lorenzo with six rounds to go. Honda's reigning double champion Marquez has dropped 77 points from the top after falling for the fourth time this season in the Silverstone rain.
But few doubt that Marquez will remain in contention for wins and, in turn, have an impact on the championship outcome.
“Marc is a rider that wants to win all the races, or when it is possible, no?” said Rossi. “After Silverstone the situation changed a little bit because Marc - it's not over yet, but he is a lot more far in the standings. So it looks like for the championship it is more between me and Jorge.
“I think race-by-race the situation will become more difficult because after twelve races it is just twelve points. Almost nothing. For sure, race-by-race we will have to concentrate more on the fight for the championship than winning the race. I think that Marc will race to take points, but especially to arrive in front. But I think, except from this, it will be the same as until now.”
Lorenzo made clear that he hopes Marquez's pace will help him bridge the points gap to Rossi.
“For sure Marc will try to win all the races and if he finishes between us, like in Brno, he will make a big importance in the championship,” Lorenzo said. “And for sure if I want to recover the points to Valentino the ideal situation is if I finish first, Marc second and Vale third. But I'm sure Marc will try to win all the races and he is not going to try to help anyone.”
While Yamaha did not take part in the private summer test on the new Misano asphalt, Rossi has lapped the circuit on an R1 road bike.
"I came here to train, but especially physical training, because the bike is very different [to the MotoGP bike]. The braking, the lines are so different. Like Marc, I got to try the track with the new asphalt. But tomorrow everyone will try it and understand very quickly. It is not a big difference."
Lorenzo joked: "If we were racing with R1s, he would have a bigger advantage!
"Obviously it's better to have the opportunity to train on any kind of bike. An R1 is quite close on performance to MotoGP - maybe four seconds - but I don't think it'll be a big advantage. We will see. I think Marc will have more advantage after testing here with a real MotoGP bike."
One area where there is sure to be a big difference between the Yamaha riders is crowd support, with Rossi's home fans sure to flock to the circuit this weekend.
"The support from the crowd is good. Is important. Always a great emotion. But doesn't make any difference on the track," said Rossi. "For example also at Mugello have a lot of crowd and support for me and Jorge did one of his best races of the season."
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