At the season finale of the 2009 MotoGP in Valencia last weekend, BMW honored nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi with the ‘M Award’.

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Rossi was the fastest man over the seventeen rounds of this year’s MotoGP - his prize? A standard BMW M3 Sedan.

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The weekend also allowed Rossi the opportunity to test the brand new lightweight BMW M3 GTS on the Valancia track.

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The 335kW street-legal racer made its first public debut at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit with Rossi giving the GTS the thumbs up.

"It was amazing in the GTS. Just amazing," said Rossi. "It was great, especially under braking with the light weight that it has."

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Rossi plans to be one of the first to buy the special model when it goes on sale next year. The lightweight M3 GTS coupe will go on sale early 2010 from 115,000 euro (AUD$183,730).