If I was a supreme linguist I would overwhelm your advanced intellect with an effervescent flow, littered with Italian expressions! I would be equipped with a mastery that would embarrass Rosetta Stone. I would be able to – like the mindless Italian souls who were ridiculously fortunate to witness their hero, their warrior, their legend and their source of happiness, in action at the most recent GP – proclaim, from the highest vantage point, my admiration and extended praise to ‘The Doctor’ for what can only be described as an inspired performance. A sizzling GP!
If you are a non-believer in home-court advantage, confirmed, arguably, by the 2014 Miami Heat meltdown, Valentino ‘The Doctor’ Rossi, demonstrated that there is an inexplicable force which propels the home-grown to perform at a super-human level when he is immersed in the warmth of his community!
If conclusions were drawn from qualifying, a glossy picture would not appear in the MotGP album for Honda. Yamaha, for the first time this season, dislodged Honda and snatched pole! The reigning MotoGP World Champion, Marc Marquez and his team-mate Dani Pedrosa, had to settle for P4 and 5. But, it is widely accepted that where Marquez starts on the grid is immaterial to his race performance, so doom was absent in the Marquez forecast for the Italian GP.
The Yamaha boys (Lorenzo and Rossi), riding from P1 and P3, welcomed their privileged opportunity and when the race got underway, an energized Lorenzo made a run for it. His hunger allowed him to retain P1 and he held the lead – at least for a few laps. Marquez was fully aware of Lorenzo’s agenda so he hurriedly cleared a path and announced his presence to Rossi’s rear wheel.
While I watched the race there was something about Rossi’s attitude that appeared rather peculiar. He started from P3, advanced to P2 and settled behind Lorenzo. The shelling launched by Marquez – P3 was not unexpected – what was unexpected was Rossi’s response. Each Marquez-assault was countered by an impregnable Rossi defence. Like a parent, Rossi disciplined Marquez and confined him to P3. Then it struck me – Lorenzo was ‘holding up’ Rossi. As soon as the realization struck, Rossi invaded Lorenzo’s haven with a forceful move. Marquez grabbed the momentum and followed Rossi shortly after.
Valentino ‘The Doctor’ Rossi was leading the Italian GP and motivated by the presence of his extended Italian family, he was riding like he was aiming for his first title! There is very little left to be said about Marquez, in terms of his brilliance aboard a MotoGP machine and on Sunday, at Misano, like a famished Great White shark after a frightened seal, he pursued Rossi.
Rossi, however, was a tower of strength, an insurmountable obstacle. He was Marquez’ kryptonite. Rossi, the hunted, was not willing to be upstaged and Marquez asked his machine for too much. While in the process of negotiating Turn 4, the usually forgiving Honda, threw in the towel. The rare error forced Marquez to kiss the circuit and accepted defeat’s embrace.
Rossi was unaffected. His only relevant competitor was his team-mate Lorenzo, who, despite his fans waving blasphemous flags with the words – this is Lorenzo’s land – had no answer for Rossi’s pace. The party in Italy began early on Sunday. Rossi crossed the line and greeted the checkered flag with a standing, majestic wheelie.
Before a packed house, Valentino ‘The Doctor’ Rossi, rode to his first victory for 2014. A victory, which I am certain, the 35 year old mega-star will cherish for a very long time!
Cecil Munroe Gleaner On-Line Writer