Davide Brivio talks past, present & future with PaddockChatter

Brivio (far left), one of the first to congratulate Valentino on
his podium in Le Mans.

Photo: Ducati

PaddockChatter recently had the opportunity to speak to Davide Brivio, former manager of Yamaha’s World Superbike effort and a director for Yamaha’s MotoGP squad from 2002-2010, mainly working with his close friend Valentino Rossi. Brivio left Yamaha at the same time as his fellow Italian, however unlike the rest of Rossi’s crew Brivio did not take on a role at Ducati, instead becoming an advisor to the 9 time world champion, a role he remains in to this day.

How did you become involved in MotoGP?
I had a big passion for motorcycle racing and I started to work for a Yamaha satellite Team. Soon I moved to Yamaha Italy (so called “Belgarda” at that time) managing the SBK Team. When Yamaha decided to enter with a Factory Team in the WSBK, I was appointed as Team Manager from 1995 until 2000. After spending one year with Haga in his debut in the 500 class, I was appointed by Yamaha as a Team Director of the Yamaha Marlboro Team in 2002, when the 4 stroke machine were introduced. 

Valentino will return to Yamaha this year, what do you think he learnt during his 2 years with Ducati, if anything? 
I think he became stronger, more mature and he will appreciate very much the opportunity to ride a Yamaha again. He knows that this is the best way to be back fighting for the top positions.

What did you learn in the last 2 years? 
That in the sport, an ambitious project needs the right time and a good organisation as a starting point. 

Do you think MotoGP will be much different without Casey Stoner?
Oh yes, he raised the level up. He forced other riders to improve as he has been so fast in a short time. He was a good benefit for this sport because he forced Rossi first and then later Pedrosa and Lorenzo to be faster and faster. The level is now higher.

Valentino has indicated he would like to continue his career for 2, maybe 3 years, what will you do after Valentino retires? 
I think that Valentino Rossi will race minimum 2 years in MotoGP and then he will be a rider or 

Brivio reckons this man will never stop
being a racer…

driver for many more years. I don’t know in which championship or at which level but he will be a racer for some more time. About me, I’m working for him at the moment and will see what happens afterwards. 

What results do you feel would make Valentino happy in 2013? 
To win the title will make him very happy. To be in the podium fight every weekend and win few races will make him happy, I think. 

Who do you think will be fast in MotoGP 2013, any surprises?
Pedrosa and Lorenzo will be the fastest at the beginning and Valentino will try his best to stay with them and beat them when possible. I think he can do. Then Marquez will be very, very quick to join in the group as well. Crutchlow showed some good speed last year and now he has the chance to show his improvements. He has a Yamaha so, time to go now. The same for Bradl: he will make a step up. 

Giacomo Agostini recently said that the hostility between Rossi and Lorenzo would reappear during this season, what are your thoughts on this? 
They are now mature and aware of the situation and accepted to be together. They know that for Yamaha they are both important and will start at the same level. I don’t expect any problem, until suddenly in one race some big fight happens… but I think they are intelligent to fix it quickly if it happens.

Valentino obviously enjoys competing in rally, you have joined him previously, do you have any plans to drive with Valentino this year? 
We will race in Monza Rally at the end of November as usual. This is Valentino’s end of season enjoyment and he can’t not be there!

What is your favourite memory of your time working with Valentino?
The wins but also the dinners and the party. Just great enjoyment always and everywhere.

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