Yamaha explains why Morbidelli wasn’t given factory bike

Yamaha MotoGP team principal Lin Jarvis says 2020 runner-up Franco Morbidelli deserves a factory-spec M1, but it simply wasn’t possible to give him one for 2021.

Yamaha explains why Morbidelli wasn’t given factory bike
Listen to this article

Morbidelli is the only one of Yamaha’s four riders in 2021 not to have factory-supported current-spec machinery, with the Italian remaining on the lesser ‘A-spec’ M1.

This is despite scoring three of Yamaha’s seven grand prix victories last year and finishing the campaign as its top rider, 13 points from the title in second and four places clear of Maverick Vinales on the first of the 2020 M1s. 

Speaking at Yamaha’s factory team launch event on Monday, Jarvis explained why Morbidelli wasn’t given a works bike for this year despite his success. 

“The spec of the bike is chosen by Yamaha and the teams, but there are also financial consequences to the spec of the bike you have,” Jarvis said. 

“A real factory bike frankly is a lot more expensive than an A-spec bike. There are timing issues of when you have to place the order for the materials. 

“We had the COVID issues, COVID has put a lot of pressure on sponsors, on Yamaha, on companies. So, we’re not in the most favourable economic times ever.

"The decision on the spec of the bike for Franky was taken in the middle of last year. It’s not something that could have been changed in October or November.

“Does Franky deserve to have top spec? Yes. Is it possible? Unfortunately, the answer is no.

“But as you’ve seen last year, the spec of the ‘A-spec’ bike is very similar and very performant. And coming into this year the engines are frozen. 

“So, you can imagine that bike will be equally performant in this next year as well. I don’t think Franky will have any disadvantage.” 

Read Also:

Morbidelli’s bike is essentially a 2019 M1, which the likes of Vinales and Fabio Quartararo agreed last year was a better bike than the 2020 model. 

With Morbidelli’s results proving to be more consistent, Yamaha team director Massimo Meregalli admits this year’s factory bike will be closer in spec to the SRT rider’s. 

“We suffered with a lack of grip, or in some occasions it was very difficult to adapt the set-up of our bike in all the circuits,” Meregalli said. “Already this aspect is an area where we are working, we are very focused to try to make a better-balanced bike.

“For sure, last year we could – especially in Japan – they could understand the weak points of the factory bike and the stronger points of Franky’s bike.

“So, this is a match that in Japan they are really working on.”

shares
comments

Related video

MotoGP updates Qatar COVID-19 measures
Previous article

MotoGP updates Qatar COVID-19 measures

Next article

LCR unwraps Alex Marquez’s 2021 MotoGP bike

LCR unwraps Alex Marquez’s 2021 MotoGP bike
Load comments
Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma Prime

Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma

OPINION: The French Grand Prix looks to have made Ducati’s decision on its factory team line-up simpler, as Enea Bastianini stormed to his third win of the campaign and Jorge Martin crashed out for a fifth time in 2022. But, as Ducati suggests to Motorsport.com, it remains in the strongest position in a wild rider market

MotoGP
May 16, 2022
The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP Prime

The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP

Suzuki's sudden decision to leave the MotoGP World Championship at the end of the season has acted as a stirring element in a market that had already erupted. We analyse what this means for the grid going into 2023

MotoGP
May 11, 2022
How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP Prime

How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP

Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP bike has had a tough start to life and the expected early-season title charge from Francesco Bagnaia did not materialise. But the Spanish Grand Prix signalled a turning point for both the GP22 and Bagnaia, as the 2021 runner-up belatedly got his season underway after a straight fight with Fabio Quartararo

MotoGP
May 2, 2022
How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt Prime

How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt

In a little over two months, Honda has gone from setting the pace in MotoGP testing with its new RC213V prototype to being at a crossroads - caused by the discrepancy in its riders' feedback. After a Portuguese GP that underwhelmed, serious questions are now being asked of Honda in 2022

MotoGP
Apr 26, 2022
Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes Prime

Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes

Fabio Quartararo got his MotoGP title defence off the ground in the Portuguese Grand Prix as a dominant first win of 2022 rocketed him to the top of the standings. While a significant result in terms of his title hopes, it has come at an even more important time in terms of his 2023 contract negotiations

MotoGP
Apr 25, 2022
The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year Prime

The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year

Darryn Binder has found himself in the unenviable position as MotoGP's most under-pressure rookie in 2022 having made the step directly from Moto3 with a reputation as an over-aggressive rider. This hasn't been an easy thing to shake at the start of the season, but he believes tangible progress is being made

MotoGP
Apr 18, 2022
How ‘Beast’ mode is putting Ducati in 2022 MotoGP title contention Prime

How ‘Beast’ mode is putting Ducati in 2022 MotoGP title contention

Enea Bastianini’s second win of the 2022 campaign at COTA puts him back in the lead of the standings and once again showed the best Ducati package is still the 2021 bike. Those closest to Bastianini tell Motorsport.com why he’s so good on the GP21 relative to his factory counterparts.

MotoGP
Apr 12, 2022
How Espargaro helped Aprilia shed MotoGP's underdog tag Prime

How Espargaro helped Aprilia shed MotoGP's underdog tag

Aleix Espargaro became MotoGP's newest winner in a thrilling Argentina Grand Prix in which he also proved the merits of the Aprilia project. After six years of hard graft, both parties have reaped the rewards they have long thought they deserved. But it was several key moments in that journey that led both to that momentous Sunday at Termas de Rio Hondo.

MotoGP
Apr 4, 2022