Morbidelli is returning from injury after having to undergo left knee surgery in late June. He has signed a contract with Yamaha by the end of 2023 and will be riding a motorbike for the first time this race weekend in Misano.
Italian moves to the factory team Yamaha, as a replacement for Maverick Vinalesa, who terminated his contract with Yamaha and moved to Aprillia. “First of all, I would like to thank the Petronas Yamaha team for giving Morbidelli an immediate transfer. We originally had a plan for the change to happen in the 2022 season, but due to unusual circumstances, we did so earlier. He has exceptional talent, proving this last season with second place in the overall standings, with three wins and five podium finishes. He will have to find his form gradually after the injury and we are already looking forward to his return to MotoGP, ”said the Yamaha team boss. Linen Jarvis.
Franco will rejoin rival Fabio Quartararo, with whom he was a member of the Petronas Yamaha SRT team in the 2019 and 2020 seasons. The Italian has only one place on the podium for the winners this season, mainly due to injury and surgery. “I am very happy and already looking forward to the racing weekend in Misano to compete with the factory Yamaha for the first time. I wanted to get back on a route I know well. I thank everyone who made this transition and cooperation possible for me, ”he said Morbidely.
While he will be working with former Maverick Vinales team boss Silvan Galbusero by the end of this year, it is not yet clear whether he will be joined next year by his Petronas team mechanic Ramon Forcada.
It was not entirely clear to Morbidelli at first whether he would be able to replace the team and the engine. Each racer has five engines available. The use of engines is tied to the team not to the individual. The rule is intended for racers not to move to another team of the same manufacturer in case of consumption of all five engines in the season in order to avoid penalties. Yamaha therefore now has a certain advantage over other teams in design scoring. The key to allowing the transfer is that Vinales is no longer on the team and all together is not considered a replacement. This also explains why Yamaha decided to terminate the contract immediately and not just to suspend until the end of the season at Vinales.
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