MotoGP: Yamaha and Rossi confirm two-year contract extension
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. is delighted to announce that it will continue its strong relationship with nine-time World Champion and living MotoGP legend Valentino Rossi, having signed a new two-year agreement.
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. and Valentino Rossi are delighted to have reached an agreement that will see the Italian rider remain with Yamaha’s factory team for the 2019 and 2020 MotoGP seasons, aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1.
The contract extension comes just before the 39-year-old will embark on his 13th season with Yamaha, starting at the Grand Prix in Qatar, held from March 16th – 18th.
“When I signed my last contract with Yamaha, in March 2016, I wondered if that would have been the last contract as a MotoGP rider. At that time, I decided that I’d take that decision during the following two years. During the last two years I came to the conclusion that I want to continue because racing, being a MotoGP rider, but especially riding my M1, is the thing that makes me feel good.
Having the opportunity to work with my team, with Silvano, Matteo and all my mechanics, and working with all Japanese engineers, Tsuji-san, and above all Tsuya-san, is a pleasure – I’m happy.
I want to thank Yamaha – Lin Jarvis and Maio Meregalli in particular – for their trust in me, because the challenge is difficult: being competitive until I’m 40 years old! I know it’s going to be difficult and it requires a lot of effort from my side and a lot of training but I’m ready, I am not lacking in motivation, that’s why I’m signing for two more years.”
The combination of the Doctor and the YZR-M1 has led to many milestones in the past and together they secured four MotoGP World Championship titles. He is Yamaha’s most successful Grand Prix rider in history, with 56 wins, 43 second places, and 35 third places secured in 206 races together. Moreover, out of the manufacturer’s 500 Grand Prix victories, achieved in Le Mans 2017, exactly 11% of those victories were secured by him, making him the biggest contributing rider, having scored 55 victories on a Yamaha up to that point.
For an overview of some of Rossi’s records and career highlights, visit Yamaha’s special Valentino Rossi Webpage. Clicking on the statistics will reveal a hidden image.
With six strong podiums last year, including a brilliant GP victory in the Netherlands, the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team is confident in their partnership with Rossi and look forward to being a serious title contender for 2018 and the following seasons.