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Motorsport | MotoGP

Valentino Rossi © Gallo Images

Biaggi was a great rival - Rossi



Valentino Rossi has weighed in on Max Biaggi's retirement, saying all riders know the "right moment" to call it quits.

Earlier this week, Biaggi announced he was hanging up his helmet as the 41-year-old, who won this year's World Superbike Championship by half a point, wants to spend more time with his family.

The Italian's decision brings to an end a thrilling career in motorcycle racing which often saw Biaggi, known as the Roman Emperor, and Rossi go head-to-head.

And although their relationship off the track was as fierce as it was on it, Rossi believes Biaggi was a "great" competitor.

"For me with Biaggi it was like a special relationship, because we were great, great rivals for a long period," Rossi said.

"Fighting for the Championship in 500cc and then in MotoGP. It was a very exciting fight with him.

"I think the year when we were more close was 2001 because it was the last season with the 500 two-strokes and everybody wanted to win that historic Championship.

"The battle was very, very hard on the track and also off the track!

"Out of the track our relationship was not fantastic, but anyway he was a great rival for me.

"It is useless to speak about his retirement as another rider, because every rider knows the right moment to stop... Anyway it remains good memories and great battles together."

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