Valentino Rossi has said that watching Jonas Folger’s 2017 MotoGP race around the Sachsenring helped him to a podium during todays race.
After enjoying a good start, the Italian fought through to second position and after closing within 0.6 seconds of Marc Marquez, ‘the Doctor’ didn’t have the pace to close in and properly challenge Marquez for the win.
Rossi’s secret to his success in Germany was actually watching Jonas Folger’s 2017 race. The German finished second behind Marquez on his satellite Yamaha and Rossi studied his race.
“For me was it was very important the race of Folger last year,” Rossi said.
“Because, first of all, mentally because I remember that I arrived here last year and I was not comfortable with the bike, and not strong enough. But Folger last year didn’t know it was a difficult track for the Yamaha. And he did a fantastic race. He at the level of Marc and he stayed there in the fight.
“So I studied everything of Folger. All the race, all the lines, which way he rode the bike and which way he set the bike and everything. I think it’s a good help last year the race of Folger. So maybe I have to give to him the trophy.”
With second place in Germany, Rossi secured his best finish of the season. As well as his best finish for the season, the Italian described it as his best race of the year.
“I’m satisfied with this race because it’s not just my best result of the season but also my best race,” he said.
“Because I did a very good start, it was very important because I was sixth, to try to overtake somebody at the start and then after I rode well for the 30 laps trying to save the tyre and I was always in the right place at the right moment. I was able to make some overtaking with making mistakes.
“Looking at the practice, I thought Marquez was the fastest but also Lorenzo and Dovizioso. So at the beginning with Lorenzo and Marquez in front I tried to stay as close as possible without stressing the tyre too much.”
It was good, the right way to do the race. I’m happy for me and my team because we worked hard. I’ve worked very hard these 10 days for this result and also is good for Yamaha to put two bikes on the podium here in the Sachsenring that is on paper not the best track for me or the M1 is a great result.”
Rossi was strong in the opening stages of the race and looked as if he wanted to make a move past Marquez before the Spaniard went underneath Petrucci. Rossi said that he had the pace, but just not enough pace to seriously challenge the Spaniard.
“In the first two/three laps I felt very comfortable and I knew I could push and attack,” said Rossi. “I wanted to try to overtake Marc but unfortunately I was strong but not enough.
“Anyway I was already in the right place, it was good. Because I was in the first group, I was behind Marc, Jorge was in front but he hadn’t gone, he was there. I tried to stay concentrated especially with Petrucci because I know he’s strong but maybe I can go a little bit faster so this is my strategy and for sure if I can do I overtake but it wasn’t not enough.”
Rossi also wanted to make time to congratulate his younger half-brother Luca Marini on his first podium in Moto2 after taking second place behind Brad Binder.
“For sure it’s something special you know, his first time,” he said.
“I tried to help a lot, during his career. I feel very a part; also because I push a lot to him to jump into Moto2 early, because he’s very tall, he’s also taller than me,” said Rossi.
“He wanted to continue in Moto3 because maybe he doesn’t trust himself enough to be able to ride the Moto2 so this is also good advice to him. He also suffers a lot because he dislocated his should after Qatar and after he suffered very much but he work well and I’m so happy and proud.”