You see them in the back of the garages, hidden in the motorhomes or biting their nails in front of the tv screens. They are the mothers of the GP riders. The gentile angels who prefer to hide, contrary to their husbands who usually stay on the front line.
In the past as in the present, the pattern is the same: the father in the garage, the mother in the back. Both deeply involved and concerned, but reacting in different ways.
Rosa, Marc Marquez’ mother, used to follow the races from home and only started to attend some events in the past couple of years. She is a strong character, always ready to defend her son no matter what. When she comes to Italy – a place where Marc has received taunts as a winner – she is immediately on the defensive, as “Mugello is tierra manciega (foreign country)”.
Stefania Palma, Valentino Rossi’ mother, shows up only when the pressure is high, the smell of champagne is in the air, and her support is needed to put the seal on another victory. She knows what it means to have a child racing.
“Butterflies in the stomach start one week before the race – I become more nervous.”
She usually watches the GPs at home where the rule is absolute silence. Like Rosa, Stefania has two sons on track: Vale vs Marc in MotoGP™ and Luca Marini vs Alex Marquez previously in Moto2. But that’s not the only thing they have in common, they also share a unique sensitivity to MotoGP™ racing that only a mother can have – no-one knows the champions better than them, which leaves them feeling thrilled and tense at same time.