Valentino Rossi joined Ducati for 2011, and the expectation among fans was high – the move to Ducati was heralded as a dream match, the most famous Italian rider on the most famous Italian bike.
In reality, the 2011 MotoGP season would turn out to be one of the most testing and frustrating seasons in Valentino Rossi’s career to date. Rossi struggled to get to grips with the Ducati and found himself as a mid-pack rider on more occasions than not. Even a chassis change during mid-season failed to make an impact, and 2011 was the first MotoGP season where Rossi did not manage a single race win.
The season ended on a dark note, when Rossi was involved in the crash at Sepang where Marco Simoncelli (Rossi’s close friend) lost his life.
Despite the darkness and the lack of results to celebrate, Valentino did brighten up the season with a few one-off helmet designs, with two popular ones being The Eye for Mugello and the WTF! for the Misano GP.
The list below shows the various helmet designs that Valentino Rossi wore throughout his 2011 MotoGP season:
2011 Valentino Rossi Helmets:
Rossi started his first season for Ducati with a brand new helmet design.
This helmet became know as ‘Elements’ and featured a design that blended his Sun and Moon logos with the elements of Fire, Earth, Water, and Wind.
This helmet was designed by Aldo Drudi.
The ‘eye’ helmet was Valentino Rossi’s 2011 helmet design for his home race at Mugello. Rossi always brings a unique helmet design for the Italian MotoGP races, and the ‘Eye’ helmet had a very specific meaning.
The year before at Mugello, Rossi suffered the worst crash of his career and broke his leg. The ‘Eye’ indicated that Rossi was watching the track very closely to avoid any further accidents.
The ‘WTF’ helmet was Valentino Rossi’s 2011 helmet design for his home race at Misano that really gave a clear insight into his state of mind.
The design was bright yellow and featured a thought bubble that was crammed with cartoon swear words, expletives, and graphics – all designed to represent Rossi’s frustration with his performance during his first season with Ducati.
This was the helmet design that no racing fan wanted to see.
Valentino Rossi and Aldo Drudi created this tribute to Marco Simoncelli for the closing race of the 2011 MotoGP season. Simoncelli lost his life at Sepang two weeks prior to Valencia after a collision with Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi. This design blended Simoncelli’s helmet graphics with Valentino Rossi’s graphics.