Everyone was waiting for 9th December as long as the swap of the century was planned for 9th that date even if we had to wait until Wednesday to see the first footages of that day. Lewis Hamilton and Valentino Rossi finally swapped their Mercedes and M1, a moment where the whole world put an eye on the event in Valencia, where both plurichampions had the opportunity to make an unforgettable experience.
It was an historic moment for the sport, with Monster Energy who made it possible being a common sponsor between the F1 six-time World Champion and MotoGP nine-time World Champion; it was not the first time that both of them “jumped” into a MotoGP bike and F1 car, as long as Hamilton tried the Petronas, while Rossi in the past made some tests with the Ferrari.
Focusing on the swap of the century, Valentino Rossi drove the Mercedes-AMG F1 W08 EQ Power+, the car that won the 2017 F1 Championship with Lewis Hamilton, over being successful in Constructor’s Championship. Lewis Hamilton tried on the other side the 2019 Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP YZR-M1 that the same Valentino Rossi rode in the same circuit for the last Grand Prix of the season just in Valencia.
Both of them have a lot of respect and admiration on each other as showed from the Italian and the Briton during this years and surely for Valentino and Lewis it was an emotional day where they made an unforgettable experience. The two guys had the chance to make a full day of testing trying the feeling of being and F1 rider and a MotoGP one.
Lewis Hamilton talked in this way about the day: “It’s so awesome to see a legend like Valentino in the car. I’m excited for him for discovering the car for the first time. Reminds me of my first time in a F1 car. When you see all the team around you, it’s just a different animal.”
This is what on the other side Valentino Rossi said: ““I was already a big fan of Lewis before, but now even more. We had a fantastic day, where the two top classes of motorsports not only met but worked together. Trying the W08 was a spectacular opportunity for me. I have tried an F1 car before, but much has changed since then. Sincerely, I was impressed with the car and its handling, as well as with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport team, who were great to work with. They were very welcoming and made it easy for me to get familiar with the car.
Rossi then kept talking about the car: “At first you get an amazing sensation of speed. The G-forces were not so bad, but it takes some getting used to. Once I got into the rhythm I could really push. It was a great pleasure. I felt like a real F1 driver for a day. I didn’t want the day to end!”
At the end he even spoke about Lewis on his bike: “I also rode the YZR-M1 on track with Lewis. It was a proud moment for the team to share our passion with him. Technically, Valencia is a hard track, and it was windy, so at one point I thought it could be difficult for Lewis, but he was brilliant on the bike and his position on the M1 was great. I really enjoyed sharing this experience with him, and I think he had loads of fun too, demonstrated by how reluctant he was to stop riding! I sincerely hope we will get to have many more experiences like this in the future.”