Rossi revealed that the chance to bring Yamaha their first World Championship success for ten years was a challenge he could not resist and he is now looking forward to his first appearance on the machine..
After a wait of over two months since the end of the 2003 season, and a further hour for photo-calls for the amassed media throng this morning, MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi finally opened the throttle for the first time on the Yamaha YZR-M1 motorcycle, as the 24 year-old Italian begins a new era of his already illustrious career. The flamboyant star has won the MotoGP World Championship for the past three years on board a Honda, dominating his opponents during that time. However, having made the decision to leave the Honda factory to pursue a new challenge, he now finds himself as the spearhead for their traditional rivals, Yamaha.
MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi’s enforced holiday is almost over as he prepares to make his long awaited debut on the Yamaha YZR-M1 at the end of the month at Sepang in Malaysia. The 24-year-old Italian stunned the motorcycling world when he announced he was leaving Honda to join Yamaha just hours after clinching his third successive World title in November. Rossi revealed that the chance to bring Yamaha their first World Championship success for ten years was a challenge he could not resist and he is now looking forward to his first appearance on the machine..
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. have today announced the completion of a two year contract with MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi. Despite comments from Rossi at the press conference to announce his departure from Honda last week that he could not confirm his destination until after the 31st December, Lin Jarvis, Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Racing, has officially confirmed that the Italian will be incorporated into the factory squad from the 1st January and will make his debut on the YZR-M1 at the first round of the new season on the 18th April.
The following is a statement issued on behalf of Fortuna Yamaha Team director Davide Brivio. “We welcome this evening’s news that the Honda – Valentino Rossi relationship has drawn to a close. As many people know, when it became clear that there was a possibility that Valentino would not renew his agreement with Honda we made contact with his management team. I can confirm that our discussions with Valentino’s management are proceeding well. With the confirmation that he shall not renew with Honda we shall proceed with our negotiations and hope to conclude an agreement within the immediate future.”