Valentino Rossi actually wanted to compete in a Ferrari at the 12h Gulf car race at the weekend. But that won’t work. “Il Dottore” had contact with a Covid-19 positive person and went into self-quarantine.
Valentino Rossi went into self-quarantine and can therefore not take part in the 12h Gulf race, which is to take place next Saturday (January 8, 2022) at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi. As the Kessel Racing team announced, the nine-time motorcycle world champion had contact with a Covid-19 positive person. As a result, it is now called self-quarantine for the superstar.
Rossi actually wanted to compete in a Ferrari 488 GT3 (V8 twin-turbo with 3.9 liters and approx. 600 hp) in the 12h Gulf together with his brother Luca Marini and his buddy Alessio “Uccio” Salucci. Marini and Salucci will still contest the 12h Gulf, David Fumanelli has now been announced as replacement for Rossi. The racing car is technically supported by Kessel Racing from Ticino.
The absence of Rossi is a major blow for the 12h Gulf. «Il Dottore» was most recently the main driving force behind the car race. He had taken part in the last two editions together with Marini and Salucci (in December 2019 in Abu Dhabi and in January 2021 in Bahrain) and impressed not only the car racing drivers but also the entire professional world. In 2019 there was a class win in the Pro-Am classification and in 2021 they crossed the finish line in fourth place overall.
Overall, the 2022 edition of the race will be pretty thin. Most recently, a preliminary entrylist with 15 cars (but without a pilot) was presented. How many of the 15 racers actually drive will only be shown in the first free practice on Friday.