Rossi struggling to accept his time is over- Honda MotoGP boss

Honda MotoGP boss Alberto Puig says Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi is "having a hard time accepting" that he is no longer the premier class' benchmark rider

Rossi struggling to accept his time is over- Honda MotoGP boss

Rossi has established himself as a MotoGP legend by winning seven titles, but has been unable to add to his championship tally since 2009.

He developed a rivalry with Honda's Marc Marquez - who this year secured a dominant fifth MotoGP title from six attempts - at his most recent title near-miss in 2015, when Rossi came up five points short of an eighth crown.

The relationship between the pair has remained tense and Puig, who took up the team boss role at Honda at the start of the year, suggested Rossi was the culprit in the rift.

"Valentino has been a terrific rider," Puig told Spanish daily La Vanguardia. "He has all of my respect.

"At his age [39], he still has the desire, the talent to go fast and he doesn't accept not being able to win.

"But he's having a hard time accepting that his moment is over. Sometimes the methods he uses are not the right ones.

"At no time have I seen Marquez out of line, doing anything malicious towards Rossi. It was always race incidents.

"I respect Rossi, but in life everything has its moment. And like it or not, Marc is number one [now]."

Rossi was extremely critical of Marquez earlier this year after a collision with the Spaniard in Argentina left him on the floor.

Marquez tried to apologise to Rossi after that race but was aggressively turned away by the Italian's right-hand man Uccio Salucci, while Rossi later turned down Marquez's offer of a handshake during a Misano press conference.

"Marquez doesn't care at all about the tide of opinions that is being generated from Vale's environment," Puig continued.

"On the contrary, we have sensed weakness in their actions."

Puig, who was instrumental in signing another of Rossi's rivals, Jorge Lorenzo, for 2019, described 25-year-old Marquez as being "quite close" to a perfect rider.

"Marc doesn't act like a superstar, he doesn't pretend to be someone he isn't," Puig said.

"He has the humility and curiosity to listen, to learn and to have respect. When he gets on the bike, he is a real killer, which is what he has to be. He's a machine programmed to go at full speed.

"Perfection doesn't exist, but he is quite close. Perfection is being the best, and he is. As to how much better he could be - given his age, he still has room for growth."

shares
comments
New Aprilia rider Andrea Iannone 'surprises' team in his feedback
Previous article

New Aprilia rider Andrea Iannone 'surprises' team in his feedback

Next article

Retiring Pedrosa hits out at Honda MotoGP boss Puig's 'resentment'

Retiring Pedrosa hits out at Honda MotoGP boss Puig's 'resentment'
Ranking the top 10 riders of MotoGP 2022 Plus

Ranking the top 10 riders of MotoGP 2022

The 2022 MotoGP season was another hotly contested championship, with Francesco Bagnaia emerging as the title winner after the campaign went to the wire. Autosport picks out the 10 best performers of the season

MotoGP
Nov 29, 2022
Was the MotoGP 2022 title won by Bagnaia or lost by Quartararo? Plus

Was the MotoGP 2022 title won by Bagnaia or lost by Quartararo?

Reigning MotoGP world champion Fabio Quartararo had a 91-point lead over rival Francesco Bagnaia after the German Grand Prix, a seemingly impregnable gap to overcome in the remaining 10 races. But as the Frenchman struggled for pace with his Yamaha, Bagnaia stormed back into contention and swept to Ducati's first riders' title since 2007

MotoGP
Nov 25, 2022
Why there's more to Honda's 2023 MotoGP bike than the Valencia test suggests Plus

Why there's more to Honda's 2023 MotoGP bike than the Valencia test suggests

After a run on Honda's 2023 prototype MotoGP bike, six-time champion Marc Marquez made his pessimism clear with his initial reaction. But the Japanese marque has made leadership changes behind closed doors - and a more representative bike promised for the Malaysia test in February could placate Marquez

MotoGP
Nov 23, 2022
Why the new MotoGP world champion has a stronger character than it seems Plus

Why the new MotoGP world champion has a stronger character than it seems

While new MotoGP champion Francesco Bagnaia might not be the loudest rider on the grid, his calm exterior belies a steely backbone. His part in turning around Ducati's fortunes at the start of the year, when displeased with a new engine concept, shows the strength of his character

MotoGP
Nov 16, 2022
Why Bagnaia's MotoGP triumph is as worthy as Stoner's Ducati breakthrough Plus

Why Bagnaia's MotoGP triumph is as worthy as Stoner's Ducati breakthrough

OPINION: Despite the superiority exhibited by the Ducati in 2022, the context in which Francesco Bagnaia became MotoGP world champion means that both the rider and the Italian marque merit the same recognition that the brand and Casey Stoner received after their 2007 title

MotoGP
Nov 9, 2022
Why the 2022 MotoGP season had a bittersweet ending Plus

Why the 2022 MotoGP season had a bittersweet ending

OPINION: MotoGP’s fifth last round showdown of the modern era delivered a tense finale despite the predictable outcome, as Francesco Bagnaia ended 15 years of pain for Ducati. But as emotions ran high for the Italian marque, a final victory for a departing Japanese rival tinged the campaign’s conclusion with sadness

MotoGP
Nov 7, 2022
Why the 2023 MotoGP title battle has already begun Plus

Why the 2023 MotoGP title battle has already begun

Since Ducati announced the arrival of Enea Bastianini to its factory team for 2023, the staging of the four-time race winner has strained the atmosphere within the Italian manufacturer, which has raised its guard in anticipation of what may happen between him and championship favourite Francesco Bagnaia

MotoGP
Nov 1, 2022
Why Yamaha has just six months to safeguard its MotoGP champion's future Plus

Why Yamaha has just six months to safeguard its MotoGP champion's future

Yamaha's decision to dispense pre-season with the 2022 engine it had intended to use due to lack of reliability, the promises of improvement to Fabio Quartararo and the advance with which the rider market moves leaves the Japanese brand with less than six months to prevent the Frenchman from starting to look for a way out

MotoGP
Oct 28, 2022