The rumours around Valentino Rossi’s racing career are still swirling, and some of the latest gossip has him returning to Yamaha, where he once said he’d like to end his career.
Trouble is, Yamaha already has a star rider around the top of the standings. Jorge Lorenzo has seen plenty of success since Rossi left the team, while Rossi has had a terrible time with Ducati.
But Lorenzo says he doesn’t have a problem with Rossi returning to Yamaha; in an interview with Motorsport Magazin, Lorenzo apparently put it this way: “I work for Yamaha, and if there was another fast rider on the machine, we could improve our overall chances of success.”
Rossi, on the other hand, says he’s staying put with Ducati – he’s got a substantial contract keeping him aboard. Rumours had him ready to race for Yamaha as soon as mid-season, under sponsorship from Coca-Cola, but Yamaha says they can’t afford to run another bike, even if Rossi was planning to leave Ducati. Plus, Rossi also has a contract with Pepsi subsidiary Monster Energy drinks, and he’s as likely to break that deal as he is to broker a long term sponsorship from some Martians.
So, Rossi’s fans will just have to wait until the end of the 2012 season to see how his future goes down. Despite all the rumours – last year, some talk had him retiring, some had him going to Honda – it seems he wants to stay in his current contract; once that’s over, though, things should get interesting. He’s been criticizing his machines ever since he started at Ducati, and it just doesn’t seem likely that he will stay put.