'Learning to Lose' Makes Winning Sweeter... Rossi Wins Sixth Moto GP Title
With the season still three races from over, Valentino Rossi has clinched the Moto GP title for 2008 with a 92 point, uncatchable lead over last year's champion, Casey Stoner. The renewed champion credited tough lessons in humility for his new focus and determination; saying that winning is better when you know what it is to lose.
For two years, The Doctor has lost focus and titles to the likes of American bachelor-at-large, Nickey Hayden and wunderkind Casey Stoner, while still being hunted down by long time rivals and consistency experts Loris Capirossi and Colin Edwards. While going over 200 MILES an hour, he was still just not fast enough and there were rumours of his financial battles and struggle with popularity having a huge gravitational pull on his race-face. But no one likes being beaten... and least of all someone who never knew defeat in the first place.
This season, though, he's managed to regain his focus, bravado and ethereal command of the track; he's schooled Stoner in 'aggressive passing' and left the likes of Dani Pedrosa waiting, again, for his time in the sun. Sorry Dani.
Today, Rossi commented to MotoGP.com - "I grew up a lot in the last two years, because at the end of 2005 I had a great career and I had won all the important targets so far. 125, 250 and then five titles in a row in MotoGP with two different bikes – I felt unbeatable. But in 2006 and 2007 I learnt to lose and this has been very important. I came out much stronger and my level of concentration and effort to win this championship has been higher than ever before."
It'll be a huge 2009 season with Hayden switching to Ducati to accompany Stoner, and rumours of the return of Sete Giberneau to another new satellite Ducati team. Stay tuned!