Even if you’re not into motorcycle racing you’ve still probably heard the name, Valentino Rossi, before. He’s been in the game since 1996 and won his first title the following year, in the 125cc category. I guess you could say racing is in his blood, since his dad, Graziano Rossi, had also raced competitively and obviously induced the passion for the sport in his son. And so the Rossi family raced for the prize and began to stack them up.
Valentino Rossi went from 125cc to 250cc to 500cc winning a championship in each category. And in 2001 he finally graduated to the premier class, the MotoGP World Championships, racing for Honda and won at the highest level in 2002, 2003, and continued to win back-to-back in 2003, 2004 before leaving Honda to race for Yamaha. Later returning to the winner podium in 2008 and 2009.
But, like every success story a lull can always come about. For Valentino Rossi, 2010 was the beginning of a slump in his career. After suffering an injury that broke his leg while practicing in Mugello (Tuscany, Italy), he ended up missing four races that season and finished third in the championship. Subsequently the racer broke ties with his long-time sponsor Yamaha, to sign a two-year contract with Ducati. Another adventure that did not lead Rossi to any wins. Eventually bowing out of the Ducati deal, only one year and a half into his two year contract.
Afterwards it was announced Valentino Rossi would be taking a pay-cut, but nonetheless returning to Yamaha. Still, 2013 didn’t mark a return to winning the championship, as he concluded the season in fourth place. The end of this season also marked the conclusion of his long-time collaboration with crew chief Jeremy Burgess. After fourteen years and 80-odd Grand Prix wins their relationship was over. Rossi admitted it was his decision, claiming he needed a “new boost, some more motivation”. Burgess, confessed feeling “blindsided” by the news, but recognized that they had been “chasing rainbows for four years” and that that is a long time in racing periods.
So, 2014 rolled in with Silvano Galbusera at Rossi’s side and a good start as Valentino managed to come-up second at the season-opening Qatar Grand Prix, after battling with Márquez right until the last lap for the victory. He’d get another first-place at the San Marino Grand Prix, in Monaco, which pushed him past the 500 career point’s total, becoming the first rider to achieve this. Although despite breaking this motorcycle record he finished as championship runner-up, 67 points behind Honda’s Spanish racer, Marc Márquez.
But, still with all these titles Valentino Rossi only stands second to Giacomo Agostini with 111 race wins versus 122, but Rossi is still racing for the record breaker… Now battling his teammate Jorge Lorenzo (58 race wins to date) for the 2015 MotoGP title.
All has not yet been said and done, as nine-time MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi has more than already carved a place in motorcycling history for himself. Still competing at the highest level while being regarded by many as the most successful racer of all time. With plenty of trophies, records and victories to back up these grandiose claims and some befitting special edition watches that have been created to bear his name and number.
Luxury watch manufacturer Jaeger-LeCoultre has a vast history and impressive track record all their own. But they just had to catch up with the 36-year old Italian racer and get Valentino Rossi to be part of their legacy as well. The model in question is a new incarnation of the: JLC Master Compressor Extreme Alarm, Valentino Rossi Edition. Its production has been limited to 315 pieces worldwide. It comes in stainless steel, pink gold and titanium, all of which bear Rossi’s number “46” on the dial, just like on his bike, with Jaeger’s proprietary shock absorbing system. The 46.5mm watch features an automatic JLC in-house movement, caliber 912, with hour, minute, seconds, date and world time functions that display 24 different time zones. The alarm has a double hour and minute display with an on/off selector and is water resistant to 100m.
“The precision and attention to detail is amazing; the watches are like my racing bikes.” – says: Valentino Rossi
And as the racers passion for watches was ignited another model was dubbed with his name and number: the Master Compressor, with a black carbon fiber dial with yellow highlights and luminous hands & markers, a 2-quick lock crown, a date display at 3 o’clock, with a unique juxtaposed 2-disc hour and minute system for the alarm visible at the 9 o’clock position. Mounted to the watch is a black leather strap with yellow stitching and an additional yellow rubber strap with a deployment buckle. Its case is made of titanium and has a 46mm diameter to match his professional racing number:”46”.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Valentino Rossi Master Compressor
The watch is powered by a caliber 912, automatic movement, which means the winding of the spring occurs automatically when the wearer moves his arm. A fitting mechanism for people who tend not to hold still and enjoy feeding off their own adrenaline. The Jaeger-LeCoultre Valentino Rossi Master Compressor’s, 24 world display on the outer flange has also substituted some of the traditional cities on the world time ring with racetrack names: Laguna Seca, Cairo, Azores, New York, and others, maintaining the tribute and Rossi motif.
At the moment we’re 3 races away from finishing the season and Valentino Rossi is in first place with 312 points, followed by Jorge Lorenzo (305 points) and Marc Márquez (222 points) so it seems like it’s going to be battled out by fellow team-members.
Now off to the tracks for a win and to show support by rocking one of these watches! It’s for the win Rossi! It’s for a 10th Moto Gran Prix world championship Valentino! May Jaeger-LeCoultre chronographs commence to register favorable lap-times! Ready, set, go!…
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Upcoming Race Dates:
11/08/2015 – Valencia Grand Prix (Spain)
Final Top 3:
Winner 1st – Jorge Lorenzo (330 points)
2nd – Valentino Rossi (325 points)
3rd – Marc Marquez (242 points)