The Max Biaggi comeback rumors are turning into a virtual telenovela, something we were afraid at the start of this Italian soap opera as we saw what happened with Troy Bayliss when he made certain statements about his wanting to return to racing.
Mad Max on Sunday evening tweeted “At Assen we cleared up some things. In ten days were going to test. Circuit to define. Almost certain. Tomorrow details.” The former World champion seemed launched to become a Ducati test rider after Francis Batta tried to convince him, but apparently it turned out that management at Ducati wasn’t that interested.
Biaggi avoided Twitter for a day, and then posted a couple of pics of himself riding a Supermotard, adding that “he has been misunderstood” and the only tests he’ll be doing are ones with a supermotard bike and nothing more, and that he sincerely didn’t say anything else, and then later on wrote, “the only truth is that I want to continue giving emotions.”
Maybe the denial of a comeback could be tied to the fact that Italian gossip rags are speculating that Biaggi and long time girlfriend and mother of his two kids, Eleonora Pedron are on the outs and he may want to dedicate his time on saving his relationship, instead of yanking his fans’ chains every few days.
Max Biaggi joked all weekend long at Assen regarding the rumor that he’ll be at Monza in two weeks time as a wildcard. The former rider also displayed a scrap book with all the clippings from Italian newspapers and websites talking about his return.
Biaggi dismissed the rumor again both via Twitter and while he was commenting Saturday’s Superpole at Assen - while wearing his lid - but Francis Batta revealed that he did ask Biaggi to join Ducati and become their test rider, and help in the development of the still very green 1199 Panigale R, offering him a wildcard ride in return in the second part of the season.
“With Max we started talking in Australia, but it was too early and Ducati was still re-organizing after their acquistion by Audi. In the last few days we’ve been talking seriously, and Biaggi asked me about a contract, and to find the funds we need no more than a week,” said the Belgium manager to the Gazzetta dello Sport.
The rumors of Max Biaggi wanting to race in next month’s World Superbike round at Monza, have been confirmed by Dorna’s World Superbike representative Gregorio Lavilla.
According to an interview published in Italy’s Gazzetta dello Sport Lavillia revealed that the Roman Emperor has in fact requested a wildcard entry: “Biaggi has asked us for a wild card entry for Monza and of course we would be very happy action to see the reigning World champion back in action in Italy and in the most fascinating event of the entire calendar.
The only seemingly open question that remains is who is behind Biaggi wildcard entry, and what bike and team will the Italian race for.
Speculation is open that it may be Kawasaki as Biaggi did the special promo event for Pirelli on the aircraft carrier wearing his old Aprilia leathers, but he was riding a Kawasaki, while others are saying that it will be his old Aprilia team, as Gigi dall’Igna has said there will always be a RSV4 for their most winningest rider.
Max Biaggi shot down any possibilities of returning to World Superbikes in an interview with the Gazzetta dello Sport with ‘it’s impossible’, but the Roman Emperor via Twitter keeps teasing his millions of orphaned fans with ambiguous tweets that leaves his intentions open to interpretation, and our Italian cousins over at Motoblog are now suggesting that Biaggi may decide to wildcard at the Monza.
Biaggi’s wrote in his latest tweet:
Which translated means more or less, “tomorrow a long day of work and important answers, will let you know. Keep training.”
The question that Italians keep asking themselves is why Biaggi is spending so much time training if he hasn’t any intention of taking part in a race.
Many hope that the Black Corsair will at least do a couple of wildcards in order to raise more interest in World Superbikes that has yet to fully take off now that it’s aired on an important TV channel like Sportmediaset on Italia 1 and 2 and with Biaggi himself as one of the commentators.
What do you guys think? Is is just some wishful thinking by some die-hard fans who read more into Biaggi’s cryptic messages than there actually is?
Following the rumors during last week’s Aragon Superbike round that Max Biaggi was thinking of making a comeback, the Roman Emperor in an interview with the usual Gazzetta dello Sport, categorically denied he was thinking of a return to racing, adding that it was ‘impossible’.
I’m not thinking of making a return. I recently retired and I hear that there’s a lot of interest, but a return is impossible,” said the 41-year old Biaggi.
The Italian also denied that he quit racing due to a question of money: “I didn’t stop because they didn’t pay me enough, but because I wanted to quit.
A couple of Tweets between Max Biaggi and Flavio Briatore, and some paddock gossip during last weekend’s World Superbike round at Motorland Aragon has prompted some speculation - by an Italian motorcycle website - that the retired two-time Superbike champion may be contemplating a return to racing.
The 41-year old Roman Emperor announced his retirement from racing last November saying it was “the right time to stop” and now is the World Superbike technical commentator for Sportmediaset, but apparently the Italian still feels the call of racing in his blood, and going to the circuits but not putting on his racing leathers and riding is difficult for him.
According to Moto.it, Biaggi is still in excellent physical condition and continues to train, and rumors have it that there was a contact between the Italian and Kawasaki, and that he was also seen talking to Aprilia’s Gigi Dall’Igna for an unusually long period of time (which could easily be explained that he’s just doing his job as a commentator, and trying to find some interesting info to relate to TV viewers).
A return by Biaggi could certainly spark more interest in World Superbikes especially in Italy, which saw the last televised round have only a little more than one million viewers for race 1 and just 616,000 for race 2, with most analysts saying that it was due to the first warm and sunny day in several months and people couldn’t wait to get outside and do their own riding instead of watching it on TV, while others blame it on the fact that there is no longer a true media grabbing personality.
Let’s just not hope that this rumor of Biaggi to make a comeback doesn’t turn into the same thing that happened with Troy Bayliss, who went on for a year after he retired saying that he’d like to return to racing giving his numerous fans hopes and then dashing them.
Max Biaggi got into the saddle again to help launch Pirelli’s Angel GT new Sport Touring tires, in a special test event that took place on the launch deck of the Italian aircraft carrier Cavour, which is currently docked in the port of Taranto.
Biaggi’s test consisted of riding his bike up 100 km/h and stopping on a predetermined point of the deck that was previously doused with water supplied atmoshperic water pump sand seeing how the sports tire reacted in the extreme wet conditions.
The six time World Champion retired from racing in 2012 and is currently a World Superbike commentator for Sportmediaset.
MotoGeo interviewed Max Biaggi. The Roman Emperor won four 250cc World Championship titles, three with Aprilia and one on a Honda, and after becoming persona non grata in MotoGP he turned to World Superbikes where he took home another two titles for Aprilia (2010 and 2012) before retiring and turning down another contract with the Italian manufacturer.
Here Biaggi reflects on last season where he won the title by just half a point, certain highlights of his extraordinary twenty-year long career, what he considers the two best bikes that he enjoyed the most, retirement, family and his predictions for the upcoming World Superbike and MotoGP seasons that will see him commenting Superbikes for Italian broadcaster Mediaset.
Enjoy the video.
During a recent interview with Mediaset’s Studio Sport XXL show, Max Biaggi (who now works for the Italian broadcaster) said, “Valentino Rossi is like Copperfield! Despite two bad years, he got the world champion bike!’ and regarding Rossi’s chances of winning the 2013 championship added, “only in the imagination of some people could Valentino come back to win.”
Many Italians took the former World Superbike champions comment as another dig against Rossi, remembering the good old days when the Rossi-Biaggi feuds used to separate the country’s motorcycle fans on who is/was a better rider, which still happens even today.
However, the two former rivals have considerably mellowed out towards each other over the last years, with Rossi even becoming one of Biaggi’s followers on Twitter last December, when they both partecipated in the “Sic Supermoto Day” charity event.
Not wanting to be misunderstand on his ‘Copperfield’ comment, Biaggi decided to clear the air with two tweets:
“Saying Rossi is like Copperfield was meant to be a compliment. Only a magician like him could recover so well after two years that were so difficult” and “Getting back on the world championship winning Yamaha with Lorenzo was anything but easy. I wish them both good luck.”
Biaggi debuts this weekend as Italia 1’s World Superbike commentator.
After losing their case against Argentine football legend, Diego Maradona who was accused of not paying a tax bill of 37.2 million euros (23.5 million of which was interest), the Italian tax man saw another famous sports star accused of tax evasion slip threw their sticky fingers, Max Biaggi.
The retired six-time World Champion was to be tried for tax evasion, but the 7th Criminal Court in Rome threw out the case because it reached the statute of limitations.
Biaggi had used the scudo fiscale, or “tax shield” law (which wipes the slate clean of any tax offences) to bring back money that he had desposited on foreign accounts to Italy, but he was still to undergo trial for tax evasion because the Italian Revenue office believed that Biaggi’s domicile in the Principality of Monaco was fake and only to take advantage of the country’s much lighter tax regime.
Biaggi isn’t the only Italian motorcycle star accused of tax evasion, Valentino Rossi was also caught up in the net, and he settled with the tax man - without putting up a legal battle - for 35 million euros. Marco Melandri was handed a suspended jail sentence last year and former MotoGP rider Loris Capirossi was ordered to pay a 2 million euro fine in 2010.