Valentino Rossi was back on the podium for the fifth time in 2013 and the 146th time in his premier class career at the Gran Premio Iveco de Aragon on Sunday.
The nine-time World Champion took advantage of the highside crash of Dani Pedrosa in front of him during the race to slot in behind Marc Marquez and Jorge Lorenzo and was happy to return to the rostrum.
However, it was not an easy ride, with The Doctor fending off the challenge of Alvaro Bautista towards the end of the 23 lap MotorLand contest and with Stefan Bradl and Cal Crutchlow also hovering nearby for most of the race.
“At the end, the battle was very hard. I always had Bradl very close and in the end I had Bautista, who was also very fast; he overtook me and was able to make up a bit of a gap. Afterwards, I was able to come back and overtake and did the last lap very much on the limit because I wanted to try and arrive on the podium. Also, I had to pay attention because Crutchlow was not so far behind,” sated Rossi post-race.
Although satisfied to be up on the rostrum again, the Yamaha Factory Racing rider acknowledged he wanted to be closer to the front, having finished 13 seconds adrift of Marquez.
“It is always positive and a great result to be on the podium, but I expected a little bit more from the race,” he continued.
“I want to go faster and be closer to the top guys because all weekend, especially yesterday, it was not so bad. I decided for the harder tyre on the front – Jorge and Marc had the softer – and after some laps I was in a lot of trouble with understeer and under braking. I tried the maximum and wasn’t strong enough, but this result is good for the team and I and we will try again next time in Malaysia.”Aragon, MotoGP, Valentino Rossi