Uccio – For All, Alessio Salucci is only Uccio. The inseparable friend of Valentino Rossi. Arrived in the paddock with his childhood friend, he quickly becomes indispensable, assuming the role of Assistant. Twenty years later, Uccio has grown and matured along his friend and now has diversified its many tasks. Now, his work is the director of the Sky sports racing Team VR46 and he manages the VR46 Riders Academy.
Motorsport.com spoke shortly with Uccio, before the 2016 Catalunya Grand Prix. In the long interview, Uccio remembered some important moments of his life. Such as when he realized that Rossi was not only a good driver but a great champion. “At the time, I was very young. I was fifteen. In 1996, we switched from the European Championship to the World Championship. He finished fourth in Jerez and there I realized it might have been our life. Then, the first World Championship at 18 years old and our story began.”
Then, Uccio tells about his close relationship with the Doctor. “I and Vale are real friends. A strong friendship binds us since we were four years old. In my opinion, our friendship was also a bit lucky. For me and for him. I tell him what I think. Always. When he wrong on the track, when he tackles a weekend in a way I didn’t like. When he runs very well. I think that’s our strength.” The most difficult moment was the 2015 world championship. “We can’t forget. I think it is something that we will be taking back all his life. Then, I told him that we will have to live with it. We won’t have to wait for forgetting it. We just have to try to live with it and put in an area of the brain small without making it too big. He didn’t exceed. However, now we just have to win races.”
Uccio: “We can win the 2016 Title”
Talking about the future, Uccio is very sincere. “I think that we have a chance to win 2016 world championship. The Championship is still long and Rossi is concentrated, focused on the goal. For me, he’s a Martian! Then, next year we will have a new teammate, Maverick Vinales. A very strong rider. We must fight to get ahead because it has 21 years and he is a tremendous talent. However, now we have Lorenzo that I think is one of the strongest riders in the past 10 years. So, I think that Maverick needs more time before reaching the Spaniard.”