VALENTINO Rossi's early MotoGP return after breaking a leg at the age of 38 sets an example younger riders should study.
That's the opinion of Davide Brivio, Rossi's team manager at Yamaha.
Rossi broke his right tibia and fibula in an enduro accident on August 31 last year, undergoing surgery in the early hours of September 1. The Italian missed Misano, but was back on his Yamaha M1 at Aragon, just 22 days after suffering the injury.
The nine-time world champion sensationally qualified on the front row and held second place for half the race, eventually finishing a fraction behind Movistar Yamaha team-mate (and pole sitter) Maverick Vinales, in fifth.
Rossi went on to claim his first podium since the leg injury with a fighting second place at Phillip Island.
Brivio, now running Suzuki's MotoGP team, told Crash.net: "Valentino has always surprised me, but on this occasion what surprised me most was the motivation he had to come back early.
"I mean, you would think after such a long career, winning everything that he has won, missing one more race shouldn't make a big difference, no?
"But instead he worked very hard and made a big effort to be back one race early.
"I always say Valentino is a model that should be studied and I hope that the younger generation of riders look at what he did and try to get some motivation.
"They should take example from the passion and motivation he has in wanting to ride a bike.
"I was happy for that. I hope many other riders will look at it and follow."