Valentino Rossi: 200 mph M1 Wheelchair

MotoGP News

This weekend, thousands of Valentino Rossi fans may see the Italian aboard his personal 200 mph wheelchair, the Fiat Yamaha M1, at Sachsenring for the eight round of the MotoGP Championship.

The nine-time world champion announced Wednesday that he will make his return – if the FIM Chief Medical Officer clears him to race. Rossi is already displaying his competitive nature, stating "I miss my bike and my team and I want to try."

And only weeks after he lay wounded with a broken leg from his June 5th crash at Mugello, he tested twice on a Yamaha R1 World Superbike machine; during his Brno test this past Monday, he set lap times that would have put him on the front row of this season’s Brno World Superbike Superpole.

2010 World Superbike: Brno Superpole Results:
1. (35) Crutchlow C. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 1’58.018
2. (3) Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’58.743
3. (65) Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1’59.094
X. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha YZF R1 1’59.135

4. (111) Xaus R. (ESP) BMW S1000 RR 1’59.135
5. (50) Guintoli S. (FRA) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1’59.179
6. (99) Scassa L. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’59.393
7. (84) Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’59.451
8. (7) Checa C. (ESP) Ducati 1098R 1’59.571
9. (57) Lanzi L. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1’59.699
10. (52) Toseland J. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 1’59.699
11. (76) Neukirchner M. (GER) Honda CBR1000RR 1’59.829
12. (66) Sykes T. (GBR) Kawasaki ZX 10R 1’59.830
13. (2) Camier L. (GBR) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 1’59.841
14. (91) Haslam L. (GBR) Suzuki GSX-R1000 1’59.995
15. (41) Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 2’00.258
16. (67) Byrne S. (GBR) Ducati 1098R 2’00.564
17. (96) Smrz J. (CZE) Aprilia RSV4 Factory 2’00.341
18. (77) Vermeulen C. (AUS) Kawasaki ZX 10R 2’01.167
19. (15) Baiocco M. (ITA) Kawasaki ZX 10R 2’01.523
20. (11) Corser T. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 2’00.508
21. (23) Parkes B. (AUS) Honda CBR1000RR 2’01.463
22. (95) Hayden R. (USA) Kawasaki ZX 10R 2’01.826

If Vale Rossi returns, he has 11 rounds to make up some points. And if "The Doctor" can replicate the superb performance he achieved on the Superbike over to his M1, there is more than a possibility for him to gain his 10th world championship, which would be his eight in the premier class.

But his biggest obstacle may come from his closest rival, teammate Jorge Lorenzo. The 23-year-old Spaniard leads the championship with 165 points, 104 ahead of Rossi, who sits in seventh position with 61 points.

And considering last year’s race when Rossi was in full health and only beat Lorenzo by 0.099 of a second, VR 46 has to really get back into the mindset of racing motorcycles. But from his most recent statements discussing his downtime, Rossi may have already mentally designed his strategy.

Valentino Rossi says: "I felt good on the R1 but I know my M1 at the track is a different thing and it will be hard for me, but I miss my bike and my team and I want to try. I am really looking forward to seeing everyone and being back in the paddock; I was tired of being at home!"