The motorcycling world was shocked to learn that on August 31st, Valentino Rossi broke his leg. The incident happened while he was training on an enduro bike near his home town of Tavullia. This accident all but crushes the rider’s shot at the 2017 MotoGP World Championship, but it is also an opportunity for other riders.
And Rossi’s Stand In Rider Is…
Now that Vale has been through surgery and doctors have gotten a good chance to take a look at him, they believe that the nine-time world champion will need 40 days to fully heal. This puts a crimp in Yamaha’s championship plans.
The racer’s convalescence has already caused him to miss the San Marino GP, where Yamaha didn’t enter a rider. However, Rossi will be unable to ride at the Aragon GP either, and Yamaha has a contractual obligation to field two riders at the Spanish race. So, another racer will have to fill in for Rossi, and if you’re a racing fan, that has left you rooting for all your favorite riders.
Here in the U.S., that may lead you to rooting for Cameron Beaubier to make his MotoGP debut. As 2016 MotoAmerica Champion, and 10th place finisher at his first WSBK weekend at Donington Park, Beaubier would seem like Yamaha’s best option. However, a few days before Rossi’s accident, Cameron fell from his bike during MotoAmerica race two in Pittsburgh. The crash dislocated his shoulder and required surgery. Cam is now out for the rest of the season, which took him out of contention to fill in for Rossi before the nine-time champ had even been injured.
Despite this, Yamaha still had plenty of options. The company eventually settled on World Superbike rider Michael van der Mark as Rossi’s stand in. Van der Mark is a former World Supersport champion and even though he is arguably one of the best riders in the paddock, his teammate Alex Lowes is currently out performing him in the WSBK championship. However, Lowes has already had the opportunity to fill in at the GP level, which has given van der Mark the perfect opportunity to show off his talents.
Brought to you by the motorcycling attorneys at Metier Law Firm—remember to keep the racing on the racetrack!