Valentino Rossi quashes retirement talk

7-time MotoGP winner Valentino Rossi has dismissed speculation he will be retiring from the sport

7-time MotoGP winner Valentino Rossi has dismissed speculation he will be retiring from the sport at the conclusion of the season, saying he is on the verge of signing a new deal with Petronas Yamaha. Rossi, 41, will go away the Yamaha factory staff at the conclusion of the season but is poised for a seat at the satellite Petronas Yamaha outfit in a straight swap with young Frenchman Fabio Quartararo.

The Italian stated he expects an announcement on his new deal at the Catalan Grand Prix in two months.

“It really is not true,” Rossi stated in advance of his house San Marino Grand Prix this weekend.

“We choose time with Yamaha since we are not in a hurry and we have something to correct. But we are really shut to signing and I will race with Petronas upcoming calendar year.

“I want to say ninety nine% since it can be not signed. But I think that perhaps in Barcelona we can give the announcement.”

After enduring a few challenging races in a row, championship leader Quartararo will be out to develop on his a few-issue benefit at the top of the standings.

In his rookie season previous calendar year, the Frenchman battled with globe winner Marc Marquez till the ultimate lap at Misano in advance of crossing the line in next place.

“Truthfully, it can be nevertheless challenging to believe that that we are nevertheless leading the championship. It really is outrageous,” stated Quartararo.

“I’m confident since it can be a observe that I like, I experience at ease, let’s see. For absolutely sure I will give my optimum to fight for victory and the podium.”

Pramac Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia and LCR Honda Castrol’s Cal Crutchlow have been declared in shape for this weekend’s race. Bagnaia missed the previous a few races due to a knee harm though Crutchlow is recovering from arm surgical procedure.