Minichamps MIN312040246 2004 Valentino Rossi Figurine - South Africa MotoGP , Kneeling and Making "The Kiss" (1:12 Scale)
"I'm lucky because I don't feel too much pressure - it's only in the last hour before the race, and even then it's good, positive pressure."
- Valentino Rossi, 5-Time World Champion Moto Bike Racer
Born on February 16th, 1979, Valentino Rossi is an Italian professional motorcycle racer and multiple MotoGP World Champion. He is widely considered one of the best motorcycle racers of all time.
Following his father, Graziano Rossi, Rossi started racing in Grand Prix in 1996 for Aprilia in the 125cc category and won his first World Championship the following year. From there, he moved up to the 250cc category, again with Aprilia, and won the World Championship in 1999. He won the 500cc World Championship with Honda in 2001, the MotoGP World Championships (also with Honda) in 2002 and 2003, and continued his streak of back-to-back championships by winning the 2004 and 2005 MotoGP World Championship after leaving Honda to join Yamaha.
He is the reigning World Champion and won his seventh World Championship (5th consecutive) in the 2005 MotoGP series. At the end of the 2005 season, Valentino Rossi holds 79 Grand Prix victories which makes him the most successful rider of the Grand Prix series, surpassing legendary rider Giacomo Agostini.
Pictured here is a 1:12 scale replica of a 2004 Valentino Rossi MotoGP figurine posed in the kneeling position and making "The Kiss" to the front of his bike after the South Africa MotoGP. Sold Out!
Height: 4 inches
Release Date: June 2009
Historical Account: "Superstitions" - Rossi is a very superstitious person and his pre-ride rituals are well known. Prior to riding (whether racing, qualifying, or practice), he will start his personal ritual by stopping at about 2 metres from his bike, bend over and reach his boots (thus the 2004 TV spoiler "Are you ready boots?"). Then, when arriving at his bike, he will crouch down and hold the right-side foot-peg, with his head bowed. It is not known whether he is in silent prayer, if he is getting in the correct frame-of-mind needed to ride, or paying respect to a fellow racer, family member, or friend. He will also be adjusting the fit of his leathers by standing straight up on the foot-pegs, whilst riding the pit-lane before the start of race or practice; this may merely be a matter of comfort, which has become a much-commented upon habit. He also revealed in an interview with MotoGP.com that he always puts one boot on before the other, one glove on before the other, and he always gets on the bike the same way. He also gets off the bike in the same way, swinging his right leg over the front of the bike.