This just in from Yamaha:
Valentino Rossi Brings A Touch of MotoGP Magic to Brazil
Sao Paulo (Brazil), 16th March 2013
Yamaha Factory Racing's Valentino Rossi made a detour on his way home from the recent test in Austin, Texas, flying in to South America as a guest of Yamaha Motor Brazil (YMDB).
The nine-time MotoGP World Champion delighted employees of Yamaha Brazil in Sao Paulo yesterday, dressed in a one-off Brazilian football shirt with the number "46", the MotoGP star made a personal visit to spend time with them and enjoy a meet and greet with YMDB President Shigeo Hayakawa.
Rossi went on to star in a photo-shoot to launch the new Factor Second Generation 125cc bike before attending a press conference for the eager Brazilian media.
This morning saw the Yamaha rider take a helicopter ride from downtown Sao Paulo to the Cittą Velo circuit where he rode the latest generation Yamaha YZF-R1 with a group of 300 selected local Yamaha dealers and customers.
Having successfully delivered a little MotoGP ?flavour' to Brazil Rossi will now fly back to Europe to prepare for Yamaha Factory Racing's team launch on the 22nd March and the subsequent three day official IRTA test at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in Spain.
Yamaha Factory Racing Rider
"It's a great pleasure to be back in Brazil after so many years. I still have good memories of the GPs I rode here. Brazilians are really special and their passion and enthusiasm is contagious! They also managed to make me dance Samba in public! I would like to thank President Hayakawa and Yamaha Motor Brazil for their invitation. I was happy to take the occasion of the test in Austin to come here to promote Yamaha and the new Factor 125cc, which YMDB is betting a lot on to give a further push to their business. I am really looking forward to coming here again soon, hopefully for a MotoGP race! Brazilians deserve a race here, as their passion for MotoGP is without equal! Now I will just have time to drink a coffee at home and then I will be heading to Jerez for the final winter test. The test in Austin was bitter-sweet for us and I am looking forward to testing in Jerez to confirm the positives we have found so far and to try to improve in the areas where we are still struggling."
President, Yamaha Motor do Brazil
"Firstly I would like to thank Valentino and Yamaha Factory Racing for coming to Brazil to join our event and product launch. I was so surprised to find so many fanatic fans of Valentino, especially as he has not come to Brazil for 10 years. He visited our office and joined me in the canteen and, although I knew him, I was again very surprised to see how "easy" he was. Brazil is now in its second stage of its motorcycle culture and our sales will be positively affected by Valentino's visit. I hope that Valentino will open further that business-door for Yamaha. I truly hope that MotoGP will come to Brazil because Brazilian fans and media are so fanatic for the Championship! And I hope to see Valentino and Yamaha Factory Racing here again very soon!"