Valentino Rossi only wants to watch Jonathan Rea’s bike race for New Zealand next year

Toward the end of October, World Superbike champion Jonathan Rea will take his first steps on to the bike he will use in his bid to become Britain’s first global sports star when he makes the final stages of his hard-earned Formula E title defense for Fiat-Mercedes. But while the Ulsterman will be leaving one round to chase a 100th career win, it will not be the first time that Prancing Horse legend Valentino Rossi has watched how the up-and-coming Italian MotoGP ace makes his motorbikes. “He knows that we will get to try our hardest when we start to compete in 2019,” Pecco, as the close friends and rivals are known, told “Maybe he doesn’t want to watch this campaign because he will want to keep himself busy and be away from bikes for some time,” he said. It’s been a landmark year for Pecco after competing in his second MotoGP season in which he started every race and he ended it as a Moto3 champion at the age of 21. Back in May, he won the European Superbike race at the Portugese TT — the most prestigious and most prestigious race in the continent. “There have been a lot of years that I have had fantastic racing, a lot of great opportunities,” Pecco said. “I have been working so hard over the years, even since I was 12, 14 years old, at full speed, working and knowing that if I stick with my feet, with my job and my job in life I would get to the next level.” And the youngster won’t let any of the bigger rivals — Valentino Rossi, Randy de Puniet, Valentino Rossi or Leon Haslam — spoil his fun this year. “This year has been a dream,” Pecco said. “We have won many victories and, I think, are going to have many more in the future.” Those will almost certainly include a MotoGP win.

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