The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team has returned to the Losail International Circuit in Qatar to kick off the MotoGP World Championship this weekend. Riders Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales can hardly wait to fire up their Yamaha YZR-M1s' engines under the floodlights for the first free practice session of the Grand Prix of Qatar on Thursday and finalise their bike set-up at the 5.4 km track for the first race of the season.
After a busy winter, filled with extensive testing, Rossi is ready to get back into his leathers to challenge at the front of the field. He looks forward to start comparing some solutions found during the final pre-season test a little less than two weeks ago and to return to the premier class centre stage, fighting for the victory.
Last year he bravely fought his way to fourth place in Doha, missing the podium by a hair. This year the nine-time MotoGP World Champion is determined to pop the champagne at the end of the first round. He previously secured wins in the premier class in Qatar in 2005, 2006, 2010 and 2015. He also claimed second place in 2007, 2009, 2013 and 2014.