Valentino Rossi Yamaha Racing

As Valentino Rossi reveals he's moving back to Yamaha for the 2013 MotoGP season, we crunch the numbers on the The Doctor's glittering career so far…

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Rossi will return to Yamaha after first joining them in 2004. From then until the end of the 2010 season, he won four MotoGP World Champion titles with the Yamaha YZR-M1 in 2004 and 2005 and again in 2008 and 2009.

nullThe Doctor is in: Valentino Rossi in 2005 © Yamaha

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Throughout his entire career, Rossi has had 175 podium finishes, accrued 4398 points, had 230 consecutive race starts and 15 season wins in a row. Of those, 46 wins have been with Yamaha over a seven-year period.
 

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Rossi, who is currently eighth in the Championship standings, will partner up with Yamaha star and sometime rival Jorge Lorenzo, who currently leads the 2012 MotoGP World Championship by 23 points having taken five victories from the first ten completed races of the 18-race series. "We have run this super team together in 2008, 2009 and 2010,” said Lin Jarvis, managing director of Yamaha Motor Racing. “And during that time we achieved the triple crown titles with rider, manufacturer and team world championship victories for three consecutive years.”
 

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Rossi is the most successful all-time 500 cc/MotoGP rider in terms of race wins standings, with 79 victories. He’s placed second in all time overall win standings with 105 race wins behind Giacomo Agostini’s 122. He's also been MotoGP world champion seven times.
 

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Rossi has always raced with the number #46 during his grand prix career. It’s the same number his father, Graziano Rossi, raced with in the first of his three GP wins in 1979. Usually, a World Champion is given the #1 sticker but, in homage to his hero Barry Sheene, Valentino kept the now-famous #46 as a good-luck charm.
 

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One of the great MotoGP rivalries kicked off between Rossi and current World Champ Casey Stoner after the young Australian won the 2007 title. Their professional animosity came to a head at the Laguna Seca Raceway in 2008 after numerous position changes, near misses and gravel runs resulted in Rossi taking the win and Stoner settling for second. "I have lost respect for one of the greatest riders in history," Casey said after the race, before going on to apologise at their next meeting.

nullCasey Stoner races around Laguna Seca © Gold and Goose

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Ever since he began his domination of the 500 cc category – now known as MotoGP – Rossi has been tagged with the nickname, ‘The Doctor’. The moniker has been linked to the rider’s "cold and clinical dismantling of his opponents" and to his degree-level education (which is Italy entitles one to use the title ‘Doctor’), but Valentino jokes that the name came about because Rossi is a common surname for Doctors in his home country.
 

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Rossi is noted for his superstitions and pre-match rituals. Chief among these tics is a routine in which he will stop two metres from his bike, bend over and reach for his boots. Then, he will crouch down at his bike, hold the right-side foot-peg and bow his head. "It’s just a moment to focus and talk to my bike, like moving from one place to the next,” said Rossi in an interview. He has also admitted to putting on one boot and glove before the other, getting on and off his bike in exactly the same way and watching the beginning of the 125cc race to see how long the starting lights remain lit.

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