In round 13 of the MotoGP world championship held today at Malaysia's Sepang Circuit, Valentino Rossi rode his YZR-M1 to second place and clinched the world title with four rounds remaining. This is the second consecutive world title for Yamaha and Rossi and the 12th time that Yamaha has won the riders' championship in the premier class of Grand Prix motorcycle road racing. This race ran over 21 laps with Rossi starting from the 3rd row of the grid, setting the seventh fastest time in yesterday's qualifying with a lap of 2'02.412. By mid-race Rossi had fought his way up to take the lead for a while but eventually finished the race in 2nd place.
Comment by Valentino Rossi;
"I am very happy to win this championship, even though we couldn't win the race. To come second was a great achievement because it was a difficult weekend. It was a great race and a great battle. This has been a very special championship because everyone was ready to fight us this year and all our rivals were very strong throughout. This championship is not just down to me, it is a team effort from the whole of Yamaha; my mechanics, engineers and veryone from Yamaha's management. I have an extra motivation to win with Yamaha and a great taste from every victory."
Comment by Takashi Kajikawa, President, Yamaha Motor Company;
"We are very happy to announce that we won our second consecutive MotoGP World Championship with Valentino Rossi today. This victory in MotoGP, the pinnacle of motorcycle racing, after we have already won the MX1 and MX2 riders' and manufacturers' titles this season, is made even more truly amazing in this year of Yamaha's 50th Anniversary. "We would like to extend our great gratitude to the whole team for working so hard to develop the YZR-M1 machine to such a high level. We would also like to share our joy and thank our technical partners, sponsors, Yamaha dealers and customers, the international media and all the people who supported our challenge to win this MotoGP world title. "However, the season is not over yet and with four more rounds to go we will continue to challenge for both the MotoGP Team and Manufacturers titles. We hope you will continue to support us and we trust that our challenge will give all of you the feeling of "Kando".
Comment by Shigeto Kitagawa, General Manager, Technology Development Division;
"In this important year when Yamaha Motor is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of its corporate founding, we have worked hard with the singleminded purpose of winning a second world championship title in MotoGP. Of course I deeply regret that we let down our fans in Japan by not being able to clinch the championship at the Japanese GP, and although we were not able to win the race today, we nonetheless succeeded in winning the world title after an exciting race where we challenged for victory here at the Malaysian GP.
"I believe that this great achievement is a result of the best possible marriage of Rossi's exceptional talent and our team's relentless devotion to
the single goal of winning. There are still four races remaining and we are going to continue to give our very best to try to achieve our other goals:
winning the 2005 Manufacturers' and Team World Championship. We hope that everyone will continue to root for us for the rest of the season."