Rossi targets podium at Qatar opener
20 March 2014 – Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi says he is targeting a top three finish at this weekend's season opening Qatar Grand Prix.
Rossi claimed six podiums in 2013 and one of those came in Qatar. The Italian says some of the issues which plagued him last year have been resolved ahead of the coming season.
"We have worked very hard in the testing to make some of my issues from last year better and we have found some really good speed," he said. "I have been able to be very competitive and been with the fastest riders during testing. I’m very happy with the work done to my M1 over the winter that has helped me to be fast; we have a competitive bike to fight for the podium this weekend."
"I have a great feeling with the bike and I can’t wait to start the season. Our competitors are also quite fast and so I think there are going to be some very exciting races."
Rossi is anticipating an improved showing by Aleix Espargaro and the Ducati duo of Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow.
"I believe Aleix and the Ducati riders will be strong both in terms of lap times and their race pace," he said. "The races could be different to last year especially at the start and in the first part of each race."