As expected, Valentino Rossi’s Aramco Racing Team VR46 MotoGP squad will be on Ducati machinery when it comes into the premier class next season.
Considered widely to be the best bike on the grid, and with Ducati eager to expand its ranks in the grand prix class, the leasing of Italian machines by VR46 was widely tipped, despite Rossi’s links to Yamaha.
As such, the Saudi-funded race team has a three-year contract with Ducati Corse for Desmosedici race bikes, which will span the 2022-2024 seasons, while the Saudi government has a five-year deal with VR46.
Interestingly enough, in the press release announcing the news, Saudi royal Abdulaziz bin Abdullah Al Saud gives hope to another season for Valentino Rossi, expressing his desire that the Italian MotoGP rider would ride on the VR46 team with his brother Luca Marini.
“It would be great for me that Valentino Rossi can compete in the next few years as a pilot of our Aramco Racing Team VR46 together with his brother Luca Marini who already competes this year with the sponsorship of our brands KSA New Cities, MAIC Technologies, TANAL Entertainment Sport & Media,” said Abdulaziz bin Abdullah Al Saud.
Whether or not that hope comes to fruition remains to be seen, though we do expect to hear from Rossi this summer about his future plans for his career. Many in the paddock though, expect the nine-time world champion to retire from the sport.
Managing the VR46 team’s move into MotoGP could be the next career step for Rossi though, and it is a move that has been a long time coming.
Whatever the case may be, the next chapter in the Valentino Rossi story involves red bikes, not blue ones, which is interesting in its own right.