Rumors and speculations have been flying here and there even before the wheels start spinning in MotoGP 2020 season. One of the biggest news is Valentino Rossi losing his seat with the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team in 2021 making way for Fabio Quartararo; the young French lad of the Petronas Yamaha SRT Team.
Just one day before the official Winter Test 2020 at Sepang International Circuit, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team unveiled the new 2020 Yamaha YZR-M1s with both their factory rider Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi. After the unveiling, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP held a special press conference with both the factory riders.
After 25 years of racing, Valentino; the nine-time world champion knew very well the consequences if he failed to give an immediate answer to Yamaha which will lead to his exit from the factory team. Valentino’s biggest fear is that once he committed to Yamaha and not being competitive just like in 2018. Hence, Valentino would like to wait until mid-2020 to decide if he wishes to continue to race in MotoGP and if he wished to continue, Yamaha would provide him full support.
With such uncertainty and being afraid that they might lose Fabio Quartararo, Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP immediately sign up Fabio Quartararo for 2021 replacing Valentino Rossi.
“Petronas is the best option because the situation is very good. They have a good team, younger team so they can improve, they have money, they are serious but especially for me is important to continue with M1 because first of all change of manufacturer is not easy, never easy especially at my age at this point of my career,” said Valentino when asked if he would join any other team than Petronas Yamaha SRT team.
“I don’t want to put a precise moment. During the summer around the half-season, summer break now we have to speak also more deeply. But now I can have time. I don’t want to decide in one day. I want to decide when I feel ready and from what I feel from inside. I think during the summer.
Whether Valentino, if he will set up his own VR46 team with Yamaha, “VR46 team with Yamaha I laugh because I like the idea but we don’t have the money, so this is a big problem. So it is better Petronas.
Replying to whether he will collaborate with Petronas instead, “For sure a collaboration with Petronas can be great but we already have a team in moto 3 and moto 2. For a bigger team in MotoGP is not easy and I also think that Petronas has already the team and works very well so maybe Petronas don’t need vr46 for MotoGP.
Valentino further clarifies that Lin Jarvis, the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team called upon him for a meeting and he was not surprised by the decision Yamaha made.
“I was not surprised easily. I already think of this from October last year. I remember when I was in Thailand and because the performance of Quartararo changed the situation. Because for surely for Yamaha don’t have Quartararo, maybe we can have also more time. so it was not a surprise. I think this very deeply but also I think the title won’t say yes for keeping my place in the factory team and after don’t be competitive. This is the worst thing especially for me. So I think this can happen but I expect it was a normal meeting and you know you think is the last year with the factory team but I think anyway if I’m stronger, I want to continue, change the color of the bike but the rest, not a lot,” said Valentino.