LE MANS, FRANCE - MAY 18: Valentino Rossi of Italy and Movistar Yamaha MotoGP speaks during the press conference after the MotoGP race during the MotoGp Of France - Race on May 18, 2014 in Le Mans, France.  (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)

, who has won nine titles since his debut in the 125 class in 1996, speaks during the press conference after the race in Le Mans, France. (Photo: Mirco Lazzari/Getty Images)

Valentino Rossi, who will be making his 300th start in his home race at Mugello next weekend, has joked that he wishes he had met earlier in his career, having witnessed the fantastic form of the current MotoGP™ World Champion.

The seven-time premier class title winner again finished second to the Spaniard in the fifth round of the World Championship at Le Mans in France last Sunday.

Over the course of the opening five races in 2014, 35-year-old Rossi has finished second to Marquez on three occasions. At Le Mans, the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP man headed the pack until Marquez was allowed through due to a mistake at the Bleu Esses. Rossi would go on to discuss Marquez in the post-race press conference.

“I am in a situation in which, for sure I want to win, but it is not a big problem for me.” Rossi began. “I come from a situation last year (and especially two and three years ago) when my results were a lot worse, so I am so happy about my work.

“You know…Marquez is clearly in another league. I understood that already last year and I said, ‘[Explicit]!’ It’s difficult, I should have met him and fought with him when I was 22! Anyway, it is good motivation because the level is so high and if you want to beat him you have to give it more than 100 percent.”

Rossi also provided some words on teammate , who – as the last World Champion before Marquez – now sits 80 points behind the Repsol Honda Team rider just over a quarter of the way through the 2014 campaign.

“I understand Jorge,” Rossi continued. “Personally, I am in a different situation. For me, to be on the podium behind Marc is acceptable. I know I can try to fight with him, but I am more relaxed. For Jorge, it is different because he wants to win. Last year, Jorge did some impressive races: the best of his career, even though he didn’t win the championship.

“This year, Marc has more experience and the Honda is technically a little bit better than the Yamaha, so Jorge it is a bit frustrated because he knows it is quite impossible and he doesn’t want to be second – he is not happy. So maybe for this reason he has some problems.”

The championship now rolls on towards Mugello in Italy, a home venue for Rossi at which he will be celebrating his 300th career race start since debuting in the 125 class in 1996. Since then, he has won a total of nine world titles.



For the 2014 season MotoGP offers a completely updated application to enhance your experience of the World Championship, with a new interface, improved functionality including a completely new Live Timing feature, extended content and additional languages.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the LIVE EXPERIENCE APP

Furthermore, the MotoGP Live Experience application is also the only official app which provides Live Audio Commentary, Live Timing and Live 3D Tracking of each practice, qualifying session and race of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship – all available in real-time via your mobile or tablet device.

Get all the latest news and photos directly from the paddock, plus exclusive videos – which include highlights from every session of every Grand Prix and all the winter tests.

Tags: , , ,