Rossi braced for 'another challenging weekend'

After 'complicated' home event at Mugello, Valentino Rossi braced for a 'challenging' Catalunya MotoGP.
Rossi braced for 'another challenging weekend'

Valentino Rossi will try to turn the page on one of his worst home MotoGPs as the series moves on to Catalunya this weekend.

The Italian qualified just 18th at Mugello, dropped to last place after a tangle with Joan Mir in the race and then fell on lap 8.

Even during his Ducati years, Rossi managed a pair of top-six finishes at Mugello, but he was no higher than twelfth in any track session this year.

Rossi and Yamaha hoped they could gain in the corners what they were sure to lose on the fastest straight of the season.

That proved the case during practice and qualifying for some of the M1s, most notably Petronas rookie Fabio Quartararo. But it didn't carry over to the race, when Maverick Vinales (sixth) was the only Yamaha in the top nine.

Although Rossi is the most successful rider at Catalunya with 10 victories, plus a strong recent record of four podiums in the last five years, the circuit also has a similar character to Mugello, including a long straight.

As such, and given the miserable Mugello experience, the 40-year-old is braced for 'hard work' and 'another challenging weekend'.

"After the complicated weekend in Mugello we head to Barcelona, a track that I really like. Surely it will be another challenging weekend in Spain, because we were not very competitive last time round, and we need to work hard," Rossi said.

"But we will try to do our best to fix the problems and to achieve the best possible result. On Monday there will also be a test day and we will try to work as well as possible and make the most of the occasion.”

Team director Massimo Meregalli added: "We had a bad weekend in Mugello, and now we want payback. It‘s needless to say that we are 100% committed to getting the best possible results.”

Rossi's first DNF of the season means he has dropped to fifth in the world championship, behind Mugello winner Danilo Petrucci. However, he remains the top Yamaha with Vinales still 32-points behind in eighth.