Yamaha to change its MotoGP satellite team approach

Yamaha boss Lin Jarvis says the Japanese marque will alter its relationship with its MotoGP satellite team when it gets one again either in 2024 or 2025.

Lin Jarvis, Yamaha Factory Racing

Yamaha will be the only manufacturer on the grid in 2023 to field just its two factory team bikes, after losing its satellite tie-up with RNF Racingwho has joined forces with Aprilia for the next two seasons.

The role of satellite teams has changed considerably in MotoGP in recent years, with them very much seen as simply more than mere customers – with Ducati taking the lead in this area with its three satellite squads.

Yamaha, with Tech3, Petronas SRT and RNF, typically saw its satellite teams as a business and another source of income, rather than an extension of its factory outfit in the same way Ducati, KTM and now Aprilia have done.

But, speaking to Autosport's Spanish language sister website Motorsport.es, Jarvis says the relationship it will have with a new satellite partner in the future will be different.

“We don't look directly at Ducati,” he said.

“But, the package we will offer when that happens will certainly not be the same as the one we offered five years ago.

“The relationship with the satellite teams has become much closer.”

Cal Crutchlow, RNF MotoGP Racing

Cal Crutchlow, RNF MotoGP Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Since losing RNF to Aprilia, Yamaha has been linked to a potential satellite partnership with Valentino Rossi’s VR46 team.

FIM president Jorge Viegas even stated late last year that “Valentino’s team will change Ducati for Yamaha in 2024. Nothing is confirmed yet, but this is the idea.”

This was instantly refuted by VR46, who has a contract with Ducati through to the end of 2024.

Aside from the obvious Rossi connection, the Italian winning four world titles with the marque during his MotoGP career, Yamaha operates a Moto2 team with the VR46 organisations – the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp squad.

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Jarvis refused to be drawn in on Viegas’ comments, but noted: “I don't want to comment on what Viegas said. I would just like everyone to respect his area of influence.

“Obviously we would like to get back to having a satellite team as soon as possible, but there are several elements to consider.

“The first is that we have to have a competitive bike, to convince whoever it is that it's worth changing bikes.

“Then we have to be able to offer a good deal, with good support at all levels.

“And finally, we have to respect the contracts between the possible interested parties and their current suppliers. If we can't do it in 2024, we'll do it in 2025.”

Currently only Gresini is out of contract with its partner manufacturer at the end of 2023, though given the competitiveness of the team in 2022 having won four times with Enea Bastianini, it’s unlikely it will not continue with Ducati into 2024.

RNF boss and team owner Razlan Razali told Motorsport.com last November that his squad wanted to continue with Yamaha in 2023, but refused to accept the one-year deal the Japanese marque offered.

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