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MotoGP, Morbidelli expected to become Yamaha ‘Factory’ with Quartararo at Aragon

It's a ‘possibility' they say in Yamaha. And to win the 'Triple Crown' - the world championship for riders, manufacturers and teams – they are thinking about filling the void in Petronas by flanking Rossi with Dovizioso

MotoGP: Morbidelli expected to become Yamaha ‘Factory’ with Quartararo at Aragon


There is no rest for the wicked – as they say – and even in the MotoGP paddock there is no fooling about, with little time to be bored amidst retirements, suspensions and unexpected category jumps.

Like a domino effect, Vinales' divorce from Yamaha is leading to a general reorganization of the Iwata manufacturer which has to deal with an unprecedented reshuffle.

The main problem - absurd for a successful manufacturer like Iwata - is a shortage of riders to get on their M1s, a problem confirmed at Silverstone by the (temporary) promotion of Jake Dixon to the Petronas team and the passage of the current tester Cal Crutchlow into the Factory team.

The reality is that Cal, after retiring, doesn't have that much desire to commit to Grand Prix racing again. A couple of races, especially the home one at Silverstone, are OK, but nothing beyond that. This means that Lin Jarvis will have to find a different solution for the rest of the championship.

One idea, defined as a 'possibility' by Yamaha, is to bring Franco Morbidelli directly into the factory team. To be honest, Franco does not have a contract directly with Japan, but with the Petronas team. They could arrive, as was the case with Vinales, albeit with obviously different reasons, at a consensual termination of the contract. At this point Franco would become a 'free agent' and could sign a new agreement directly with Iwata and resume the season alongside his former teammate Fabio Quartararo directly from Aragon, for the GP on 12 September.

At that point, however, a place in Petronas would remain empty and, as we already wrote on 21 August, it could be the right moment for Andrea Dovizioso to get back into the game.

Dovi would therefore race alongside Valentino Rossi with the 2019 M1. A necessary purgatory in view of a possible full-time contract in 2022, when theoretically an official M1 would be free for the Yamaha satellite team. A possibility that could be helped by the arrival of sponsor WithU which needs an Italian rider to be there.

All this because Yamaha is currently in the running for the so-called 'Triple Crown', i.e. the conquest of the Riders, Manufacturers and Teams world championships. Currently the Iwata manufacturer is the leader in the riders' standings, with Fabio, and in the teams’ one, 37 points ahead of Ducati, but just 3 points behind the Bologna factory in the manufacturers’ battle.

As you will be aware, in the Manufacturers’ title, however, only the first classified rider of the manufacturer scores points, while in the team classification (established by Dorna, but without FIM official status) both scores of the pair of drivers on the track count.

Now it’s just a matter of understanding if the mosaic will be recomposed in time for the first week of September. The problem of the duration of a possible agreement with the man from Forlì that would aim at a two-year period must also be resolved, while Yamaha has made a proposal of 6 GPs in 2021, plus 2022, in order to be free for when the contracts of all the big names in MotoGP expire.

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