SportMotoGPYamaha will "evaluate" Razgatlioglu in a test with a...

Yamaha will "evaluate" Razgatlioglu in a test with a view to MotoGP 2023

The Turkish superstar handed Yamaha its first 2021 WSBK title since 2009, beating super champion Jonathan Rea in a thrilling season that went all the way to his last stop, in Indonesia last November, without a decision.

Razgatlioglu had been linked to a jump to MotoGP for 2022 with Yamaha’s satellite team, formerly Petronas SRT, and now re-founded as RNF Racing, but ultimately signed a two-year deal to stay with the Japanese brand in WSBK.

However, Razgatlioglu did not rule out a move to MotoGP in 2023 in a post on his social media earlier this year, while Yamaha confirmed in February that it would organize a private test for the Turk in its MotoGP M1.

In an exclusive interview with , Yamaha Racing General Manager Lin Jarvis said the Razgatlioglu test – which will take place in June – is both an award for his WSBK title and an assessment of a possible move up to MotoGP in 2023.

“I would say it’s a little bit of both, because obviously winning the championship last year was a huge feat, the first time for us since 2009,” Jarvis recalled. “So it was a big deal, we really appreciate it and respect it.”

The idea of putting Toprak Razgatlioglu on a MotoGP bike comes from a long time ago, but for one reason or another it has been postponed.

“We had the test with the M1 in mind much earlier than we will finally do it. Things did not work out because our championship was delayed, theirs was delayed. There were many reasons why it was not done before, “says the Briton.

That initial intention responded more to marketing and commercial reasons, which have now changed.

“Finally, that first concept has changed and it has become a different concept now, because for sure it is one of the considerations for him to go to MotoGP.

“What we have told him is that, anyway, if he is going to make the change, to do it as soon as possible, because he will be 26 years old this year. So if he is going to come to MotoGP he should do it soon. So, What better than doing a serious test on the M1?” asks the Yamaha boss.

“We have a test planned for him in June and we will dedicate a team to him and we will spend a whole day of training together.”

“It will be the first opportunity to see and feel how he can perform on that bike. I also think he can definitely be a capable rider for the MotoGP class.”

Jarvis clarifies that any move from Razgatlioglu to MotoGP with Yamaha will be channeled through his satellite squad, although at the moment he only has a one-season deal with RNF which ends this year.

Franco Morbidelli also has a factory contract until the end of 2023, although a poor start to 2022 has put the Italian under pressure. Fabio Quartararo is likely to remain at Yamaha in 2023, despite contract negotiations continuing to progress.

“The thing is, of course, that he [Razgatlioglu] has a factory contract in World Superbike,” added Jarvis.

“Of course, every driver always wants to move to a factory team, but maybe we won’t have the opportunity in 2023,” he stressed.

“So in the case of making a move the only thing we could offer him is a factory contract in a satellite team.

The executive does not want to anticipate events, and even less with the renewal of Quartararo on the table, the ‘problem’ with Morbidelli and without clarity about who they will partner with next year for the satellite team.

“But it’s too early to talk about that and it’s too early to talk about whether that would be interesting or acceptable for him. He has a longer contract with Yamaha Europe than 2022, I think.

“But he could stay longer in Superbike. There are many ways to have a good race, as Johnny Rea can attest.”

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