Fabio Quartararo says he hopes the Italian fans won’t be angry with him when he lines up on the 2021 MotoGP grid alongside Maverick Vinales at the Yamaha factory squad, taking over fan-favourite Valentino Rossi’s seat.
The Frenchman impressed in his premier class rookie season taking a string of podiums and challenged for victories with the Petronas Yamaha SRT team.
With Rossi struggling to find his past form, Yamaha made the decision to promote Quartararo to the factory squad for 2021, leaving the Italian’s future uncertain – something Quartararo is aware of and hopes Rossi’s fans won’t be angry with him.
“The relationship between me and him [Rossi] is very good, but it’s always strange to talk to Vale because I am talking to my idol, and that’s why I’m always a little nervous,” he told Italian website GPOne.
“I remember that the first thing I did in Qatar FP1 was to do some laps with him. I have often looked at his data, but this is also a bit special for me.
“I’m half-Italian and I hope the Italian fans aren’t angry. It will seem strange at the end of the season to take that bike, every rider dreams of going to Valentino’s team.
“I’m calm, after all it’s the best thing that could have happened to me in this period.”