The greatest motorcycle racer of all time is swapping two wheels for four to contest the 2023 Bathurst 12 Hour this weekend. Now, if only it was in a Holden…
Valentino Rossi hardly needs an introduction. The 9-time Grand Prix World Champion is one of the most entertaining and successful bike riders in the world. He’s the GOAT. His retirement from MotoGP at the end of 2021 led many to think he was hanging up his leathers for good – but instead, Rossi’s turned his hand to endurance car racing.
Now he’s set to tackle Australia’s most famous racetrack behind the wheel of a Team WRT BMW M4 GT3, with the 43-year-old champing at the bit to make his way up Mount Panorama.
“I spent a long, long time in Australia in my life a lot of times in Phillip Island for the MotoGP,” Rossi told media earlier this week.
“The fans are very strong for motorsport and is always a great feeling… The first time for me in Bathurst will be very different but the place looks fantastic… It’s an incredible track, but all the drivers say that [it] is also very beautiful.”Valentino Rossi
Rossi’s actually dabbled a fair bit in four-wheeled racing over the years. Not only has he tested Formula 1 cars and NASCAR stock cars, but he’s also done a bit of rallying, having been taught the basics by legendary WRC champ Colin McRae back in the day.
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More recently, he’s competed in the Gulf 12 Hour, Blancpain Endurance Series and the GT World Challenge Europe. He’s also currently competing in the 24H GT Series and is already recording some good results, with his team taking the podium with a third-place finish at the Dubai 24 Hour earlier this year in January.
Head here for live updates for the 2023 Bathurst 12 Hour.