• Aug 27, 2010
Shocking, we know. What's been called the second-worst kept secret in MotoGP has officially been confirmed. MotoGP rookie and current World Superbike champion Ben Spies (shown at right, with Yamaha's Lin Jarvis) will be saddling up with the factory Yamaha crew starting next year. Rumors to that effect have been buzzing around the inteweb for some time and were recently fueled by Valentino Rossi's departure from the Fiat-Yamaha stable in favor of the Ducati Corse team.

Spies has been an absolute terror on two wheels in MotoGP while riding with the Tech 3 Yamaha team. The Texan is currently 7th in the overall standings thanks to a slew of top 5 finishes, and even managed to podium at Silverstone. Not too shabby for the guy's first year out. There's some indication that he'll be riding alongside Jorge Lorenzo, though Yamaha hasn't solidified anything with the Spaniard just yet.

Those who follow the MotoGP world will have likely noticed the conspicuous lack of a certain prefix from this post. Interestingly enough, 'Fiat' was nowhere to be found in the Spies announcement. Odds are we'll be hearing something about that from the former Fiat-Yamaha team sometime soon. Hit the jump for the full press blast.

[Source: Asphalt and Rubber]

Show full PR text
BEN SPIES TO JOIN FACTORY YAMAHA TEAM FOR 2011

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd is delighted to announce that current Yamaha Tech 3 rider Ben Spies will move to the Factory Team for the 2011 MotoGP season.

The 26-year-old American, who won the World Superbike Championship with Yamaha in 2009, is enjoying an impressive first season in MotoGP. He is currently the leading rookie and the top satellite rider, lying seventh in the championship.

"We're delighted that Ben will join the Factory Team for next season," said Lin Jarvis, Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Racing. "Ben has shown great promise in his first ten MotoGP races. He has learnt rapidly and recorded strong results, including a well-deserved podium finish at Silverstone - impressive for someone in their first full season.

"We believe that Ben will be a future title contender and that he will be a good fit with our team. His mission next year will be to continue learning, consistently challenge for podium places and try to win some races. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Herve Poncharal and the Tech 3 Team for taking care of Ben this season and for giving him such good training for the years ahead. I hope that he will repay them by getting some more podium results in the second half of this season and helping them to secure top satellite team status at the end of this year."

Spies added "My first year in MotoGP has been a great learning curve and for that I have to thank Herve Poncharal, all the team at Tech 3 and especially my American mechanics who have stuck by me throughout this great journey so far. Having previously been to only four of the ten tracks to date, I have to be pleased with where I am and with having achieved my first podium so soon. I'm especially pleased that Yamaha have recognized the potential in me and given me the opportunity to step up to the Factory Team so early in my GP career. I believe that by working closely with the Yamaha staff and my mechanics we will be able to help develop the M1 and make the next step of challenging for regular podiums, followed by future championships."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 7 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I wouldn't be surprised if FIAT no longer chooses to sponsor Yamaha, and instead moving over to sponsor Ducati.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm so excited about this!!!! Can't wait for next season to begin!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Now, doesn't Suzuki look dumb?!
      • 4 Years Ago
      MKIV... Your an idiot... The Doctor is great for sure but once Ben gets on a real bike ... lookout boys... as the Doctor himself said "he's fast!" Nicky is finished unless he moves from Ducati.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Good article over at SOUP about how Spies views Lorenzo.
        • 4 Years Ago
        All good things I should add.

        Personally I can't wait to see 2011. Would really like to see an American champion again, though I don't think Spies can get to that just yet. Hayden might be able to reclaim the title on his Duc tho.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @downhill.specialist
        Spies is a great rider but doubt he'll have much for Val and Lorenzo. I give him 5 years before I expect him to be the front runner and if he is, it'll be a tight one as long as the current Yami boys are in the field. Either way, having these caliber riders on the factory bikes will make the racing much more fun to watch.