Max Biaggi, the reigning World Superbike Champion, has announced his retirement from all forms of motorsport
The decision comes just a month after the Italian won the WSBK title, with the rider insisting that it was time for a new challenge.
“Today is going to be a new day for me… things will never be the same,” he wrote on Twitter on Wednesday morning.
“It’s the most difficult decision I’ve had to make,” he told reporters. “But I want the fans to remember me as a champion.”
In an interview with Corriere dello Sport, the 41-year-old confirmed that his decision to quit was based on a desire to spend more time with his family.
“I’ve chosen to quit and, unlike others, it’s not because of physical issues or because I haven’t found a competitive bike,” he said.
“I’ve turned down a contract with Aprilia that was identical to the one I had this year, with the same bike, for the same money.
“I believe I’ve missed enough time with my children and my partner already, and I think it’s right that I dedicate myself to them because time flies and I can’t stop that.
“I’m not some old politician, attached to my chair, it’s only fair that I make way for the youngsters.”
‘The Roman Emperor’ began racing at 17, later than most professionals, and made his grand prix debut in 1991 as a 20-year-old, gaining a permanent ride the following season.
After winning four consecutive 250cc titles from 1994 to 1997, Biaggi made the step up to 500cc racing where he finished second in the Championship on two occasions.
In 2002 Biaggi switched to MotoGP where he again found success but was unable to claim an elusive World title.
After taking the 2006 season off, Biaggi moved to Superbikes. It was here that he succeeded in winning a World Championship once more, claiming the 2012 Superbike title on an Aprilia.
It was with Aprilia that he won the 2012 title too, racing for the last time at Magny Cours last month.