MotoGP champion comments on Valentino Rossi vs Marc Marquez comparisons

The achievements of Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez should not be compared, insists Francesco Bagnaia.
Rossi, Valencia MotoGP Test November
Rossi, Valencia MotoGP Test November

MotoGP fans continue to debate whether Rossi or Marquez, the eternal rivals, is the best rider of all time.

Marquez has one championship fewer than Rossi - but the winner of the past two seasons claims that comparing any two champions is unfair.

Asked by DAZN if he was the heir to Rossi, Bagnaia replied: "I think it is not correct because, in the end, what riders in history have achieved has to be theirs and not others.

"They were doing the same thing with Marquez, but it was not correct. 

“In the end everyone is a different story, they are different.”

Marquez could yet eclipse Rossi’s tally of premier class championships if he wins once more, and this year he has given himself the machinery to do so by swapping Honda for Ducati.

But by entering Ducati he enters a world with links back to his old enemy Rossi.

As well as Rossi’s VR46 team - including Marco Bezzecchi, who has already had bust-ups with Marquez - Bagnaia is also a loyalist to the Italian legend.

Bagnaia became the first VR46 Academy graduate to win the MotoGP title in 2022, and was also the first Italian champion since Rossi in 2009.

But he knocks back any comparison to the great man.

"I notice that I am very different,” Bagnaia said. 

“He is much more charismatic, he liked doing the show more. 

“I am calmer and I want it to be that way.

"I have gone up to MotoGP, I have met my idol, being friends with my idol, winning the World Championship after him, it has been something incredible.

"I have been lucky enough to grow in recent years, since 2013, with them - with Valentino and the entire Academy - and I think it has helped me a lot to take more steps forward than normally."

Bagnaia will be armed with the latest-spec Desmosedici this year in his attempt to win a third championship in a row.

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