Rossi hails Mount Panorama ‘incredible’ ahead of Bathurst debut

Valentino Rossi described Mount Panorama as 'incredible' after arriving in Bathurst

Rossi described Mount Panorama as ‘incredible’ after arriving in Bathurst. Picture: Ross Gibb

Valentino Rossi has described his first experience of Mount Panorama as “incredible” ahead of his participation in this weekend’s Liqui Moly Bathurst 12 Hour.

The nine-time motorcycling world champion is set to make his debut at the endurance event at the wheel of a Team WRT BMW M4 GT3.

“I spent a long, long time in Australia in my life a lot of times in Phillip Island for the MotoGP,” Rossi said.

“The fans are very strong for motorsport and is always a great feeling.

“The first time for me in Bathurst will be very different but the place looks fantastic, is incredible.”

Rossi dallied with four-wheel competition while still racing in MotoGP, but since his retirement has begun campaigning more regularly.

That saw him driving with Team WRT in the GT World Challenge Europe last year at the wheel of an Audi R8 LMS.

For 2023, the operation has switched camps to BMW machinery, with Rossi having become a factory driver.

That saw him race throughout Europe last year, including at the iconic Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. He’s had an outing at the Nurburgring too, back in 2012.

Even still, he was left impressed after touring the Mount Panorama circuit on Thursday morning.

“We did the one lap, and it’s an incredible track, but all the drivers say that is also very beautiful,” he enthused.

“So we will wait tomorrow [to] try with the car.

“Always great,” he added of the fans.

“They are crazy for MotoGP and they always follow in Phillip Island.

“Fortunately, I did a lot a lot of great races and win some championships also, so I have a good support.”

Rossi’s first chance to get on the track in Bathurst in anger will come with opening practice, which gets underway on Friday morning at 09:45 AEDT.

Rossi has proved a hit with fans

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