Valentino Rossi: Everything loses sense, you wonder what you're still doing here

Valentino Rossi reflects on a tragic weekend at Mugello following the death of Moto3 Jason Dupasquier during the Italian MotoGP weekend 

Valentino Rossi - Petronas SRT Yamaha

Valentino Rossi has added his own contribution to the plethora of tributes being paid to Jason Dupasquier, the Moto3 rider who died during the Italian MotoGP event at Mugello over the weekend.

Though nine-time GP World Champion Rossi says he had not personally come into contact with the Swiss rider, who was in his second season of Moto3 with the PrustelGP team, he said he - like everyone else in the paddock - had felt the impact of  losing a fellow racer, particularly one so young.

Dupasquier becomes the fifth person to die as a result of injuries sustained on a GP race weekend during this Millennium, which is equal to Rossi’s long career; they are Luis Salom (2016), Marco Simoncelli (2011), Shioya Tomizawa (2006) and Dajiro Kato.

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Though Rossi himself has enjoyed a career largely devoid of major injury, he was involved in the accident that killed fellow Italian and friend Simoncelli during the 2011 Malaysian MotoGP.

As such, Rossi - who many believe will hang up his helmet at the end of the season - was in a reflective frame of mind in his tribute to the 19-year old, posted to his Instagram account, in which he says it was ‘hard to put the helmet on’ and race on.

“I did not know Jason Dupasquier personally, I had not had the opportunity to meet him in the paddock, but I followed him on the track.

“This year he was going strong, he had recovered from a bad injury but was constantly in the fast group.

He had an aggressive style on the bike, which together with that abbreviation that you saw on TV next to his number (JDU) reminded me of the legendary Joey Dunlop.

“The images on Saturday were immediately very worrying and in the evening it was understood that his conditions were very serious, but in these situations you never know everything and you cling to even the slightest hope.

“On Sunday, an hour before the race, the news came that nobody wanted to hear. It was very hard to put on a helmet and get on the bike because in a moment everything loses sense, and you wonder what you are still doing there.

“But perhaps the best way to honor and remember another driver is just to run and try to give it your all, even if unfortunately not even that can change what happened.

“Ciao Jason, rest in peace”