Movistar Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi plans on an improvement at this weekend's MotoGP race in Austin, Texas having fallen the last time he raced at the Circuit of the Americas in 2016. 

The Italian has struggled with persistent front-end problems on his YZR-M1 and will be hoping for better handling from the Yamaha. 

Rossi is currently second in the world championship rankings behind team-mate Maverick Vinales, after podiums in Qatar and Argentina.  

In an interview after arriving in Texas, Rossi said he was thrilled to be back in Austin as he liked racing there. 

"I'm happy to be in Texas. I really like Austin. The first two races of the season went well and I hope to improve the performance of the first days of free practice," Rossi said. "We have much work to do, but I'm confident in my bike and in my team. Austin is a very difficult track and I love riding here.  

"I have an account to settle with this track because last year in the warm-up I made a big step for a strong race but unfortunately I made a mistake. This year I want to try to have a good race.  

"I also really like the atmosphere at the American circuit and I come to this place always very happily."