The Italian sports daily, La Gazzetta dello Sport, reports in an article published on Saturday, October 11, that the on-going investigation into the financial affairs of MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi has uncovered additional earnings for the 2005-2006 period and that the amount now owed by the FIAT Yamaha MotoGP rider has increased from 21.75 million dollars to 33.35 million for that two-year period, and this is only slightly less than half the amount that Rossi is obliged to pay on unreported income over the 2001 to 2006 period,
In February of this year Rossi reached an agreement with the Italian Tributary Agency (equivalent to the IRA) reducing the amount originally accessedfrom nearly 90 million dollars to 50.75 million dollars, but his amount has now been increased by an additional 11.5 million dollars, bringing the new total now owed by Rossi to 62.5 million dollars (43 million euros).
This disclosure by the Italian tax authorities comes only a day after Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone said in an interview with the same paper that he hoped to see Rossi racing for Ferrari
in Formula 1 “one day.”
And on the same day, Friday, October 10, Stefano Domenicali, Sporting Director of Ferrari, said in a SkyTV interview that plans were being made for Rossi to test a Ferrari again. No date was given for the test.
The coincidence in the timing of these statements might suggest that Rossi, who is cooperating in the Italian tax investigation and now lives again in Italy after residing, apparently for tax shelter, in the United Kingdom from 2000 until 2007, may be looking at the more affluent Formula 1
Championship as a future income source after completing his current contract with Yamaha at the end of the 2010 season.
The 29 year old, who has won eight FIM Roadracing World Championships (one in 125cc, one in 250cc, one in 500 and now five in the MotoGP classhas said on occasion that he would like to remain with Yamaha until the end of his racing career, but he may have been referring only to his motorcycle racing career.
Ecclestone, according to La Gazzetta, said that it is “his dream” to see Rossi in F1 and went on to say, “I hope this day comes and that Ferrari
provides him with a car; it is the only team I can see him with.”
Ecclestone said, looking into the future of Formula 1, that he hoped Lewis Hamilton would win the title and referred to current champion Kimi Raikkonen as “a strange boy,” and said that “he has not made an effort to be a legend in the sport.”