Fiat Boss Fuels Ferrari/Rossi Rumors

04/22/2010 @ 3:02 pm, by Jensen Beeler10 COMMENTS

Fiat Chairman Luca di Montezemolo has thrown some more fuel on the never-ending fires about a Valentino Rossi’s rumored switch to Formula One racing. Fiat as you might remember is the title sponsor of the factory Yamaha MotoGP team, and also the parent company to Ferrari. In what he calls a “great idea”, di Montezemolo made it clear that he would like to see the seven-time World Champion driving for Corse Rosa.

After watching perhaps the greatest driver of all-time defect from Ferrari to Mercedes-Benz, Fiat (and Ferrari) are eager to have another mantle that they can hang their laurels on – enter Valentino Rossi.

Rossi would reportedly drive a third car in the Formula One Championship, perhaps as a satellite driver. Talking to CNN, Ferrari’s official position on a third Rossi car is that “the possibility for the major manufacturers to provide the private teams with a third car would be very effective in order to increase the appeal of¬†Formula One,” he said. “The potential involvement of such a extraordinary champion as¬†Valentino Rossi would be even more helpful.”

That’s a pretty glowing and inviting response from the teams and companies behind the proposed move, but of course there’s one person we’re still remaining to hear from in this rumor: Valentino Rossi himself.

Rossi has tested Formula One cars time and time again, but has always been cautious about his prospects in the series. Despite having little seat time in the carts, Rossi has shown himself to be a skilled driver, and of course he only has this season remaining on his contract, which is up for renewal. Will Rossi make the switch to Formula One, or is this just another chapter in what could become one of the greatest silly seasons we’ve seen in MotoGP for a long time? Only time will tell, but we’re guessing that as long as the Italian two-wheeled Champion is winning races, he’ll remain in MotoGP.

  • monkeyfumi

    No matter how many times someone tries to kill it, this story just won’t die.

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  • loki

    This is very good marketing from Ferrari, and to a lesser extent from Fiat, that’s all. Rossi was pretty clear in voicing what anyone (realistic enough) would say about the subject – “When I’ll get bored of MotoGP, I’ll probably be too old for Formula 1”. And being too old is an issue in modern Formula 1. Schumacher who was really the sport’s greatest, shows it best.

    This being said, if Rossi is looking for different thrills, I would warmly suggest him a closer move, to Ducati. I would be rude if I’d say that “if he has real balls, he *must* go there and challenge the Stonerhead on his own ground”, wouldn’t I?

  • MTGR

    Rossi has shown good times in an F1 car, but never, to my knowledge in the identical car, tire, fuel load, and set-up as the drivers everyone compares him to. Consider that F1 cars this year have been as much as 10 seconds a lap slower just by adding a full fuel load and you can see that changing up those kinds of variables makes it impossible to determine if Rossi really was going fast or not. I think he has never been put into comparable equipment on purpose, not just to preserve the latest greatest gear for the current factory drivers but also to assure that Rossi and Ferrari both come out looking as good as possible. And I am sure Rossi knows it. And so does Ferrari, this is just hype to get media coverage to help offset the costs of giving Rossi some seat-time for his personal enjoyment.

    Rossi is a talented racer, no doubt, but even great drivers and world champs routinely finish at the back in F1 when the car is not absolutely the best on the grid. Why would his risk further wealth and health in a sport where, argueably, the limitations of the machine cannot be overcome by the operator to the degree they can on a motorcycle and he is not in a position to have the rules and cars altrered to suit him (as he is in MotoGp).

    That said, if I were in his shoes I would keep saying yes to offers just to keep trying an F1 car.


    Corse Rosa =PINK RACES…….WTF

  • Peter


    what do you mean Rossi is in a position to have the rules changed to suit him in MotoGP? not saying you’re wrong, but just curious.

  • Odie


    What I think MTGR means is that Rossi is or was on some sort of MotoGP safety committee (I forget the details) and people listen to him when he starts talking about rules. If he *really* wants something changed, chances are good that they will accommodate him.

  • Peter

    ah. i see. that doesn’t seem that bad.