The nine-time World Champion’s biggest hint was given during the interview when he stated: “I hope to continue in 2021. The situation is that maybe we don’t race in 2020, so it’s fairer for me to do another championship.”
Fans or not, some felt strongly that it’s time for Number 46 to retire, and took to social media to explain why:
Steven Miller: To be completely honest, I don’t think that’s wise, there were times last season when Vale really did look like a 40 year-old man out there. His legacy is assured forevermore, but there’s a finish line for everyone, I really wouldn’t want to see The Doctor tootling around at the back, or even worse, badly injured
Mark Lopez: You can see the number on his bike? That will be the age that he will retire. ?
Simon Conway: Great rider but time to stop, you’re just not competitive enough to justify the risks anymore. Walk away with your wealth, achievements, reputation and health intact ?. Don’t be like the ex-champion boxer who looks for “just one more fight” . ❤️ VR 46. Time to stop ❤️
Ali Ridwan Race: till you see all your records been broken by Marc Márquez, stubborn rider!
Meanwhile some feel MotoGP wouldn’t be the same without Rossi, who has been filling fan stands with yellow since 2002.
Ralph Channon: Doesn’t matter what anyone says. The Doctor made MotoGP what it is today. There may be others coming through the rank and file, but without Valentino Rossi, it just wouldn’t be MotoGP!
Marc-Erwin Volker: Can’t blame him, he himself said he just loves to race. His goalposts may have shifted towards wanting to enjoy the race as oposed to looking to be world champ again, if he happens to hit both then even better
Dylan Bowles: Viva Valentino. Bucket list to watch you race one day so please don’t stop racing.
And many will support his decision regardless of when and what he chooses:
Jayson Gray: A lot of people say that Vale has blocked the way for young talent by hanging around. I think it’s fair to say that given his profile, how he has helped to raise the exposure and economy of the sport and his VR46 academy, Vale has done more than most to bring new talent in.
Marco Eckkie: Whatever he’s deciding. I respect his choice. He has shown brilliance so many times. Yes, he made mistakes. Who doesn’t? For everyone who is or has been involved in professional racing he is the benchmark. So, when he decides to quit. I will stand up for him and take my hat off.