MotoMatters.com is delighted to feature the work of iconic MotoGP writer Mat Oxley. Oxley is a former racer, TT winner and highly respected author of biographies of world champions Mick Doohan and Valentino Rossi, and currently writes for Motor Sport Magazine, where he is MotoGP correspondent. We are featuring sections from Oxley's blogs, which are posted in full on the Motor Sport Magazine website.
Jorge and Ducati: how will it go?
Yamaha may have refused to give Lorenzo full early release from his 2016 contract but there are other factors that will have much greater effect on his 2017 form
Who knows why Jorge Lorenzo and Yamaha have had a falling-out – maybe we’ll find out when we get to Motegi, or maybe we won’t.
The factory’s decision to allow its three-time MotoGP champion to test with Ducati just once before the winter testing moratorium suggests that the two have had a squabble and this is Yamaha’s way of rapping his knuckles.
I can’t say I’m that surprised. Relations often sour between rider and manufacturer before the two go their separate ways. As Nicky Hayden said shortly before he left Honda for Ducati a few years ago, “things are getting a li’l salty right now.”
And, in hindsight, I’m even less surprised considering a brief chat I had with a senior member of Yamaha management at Aragon three weeks ago. This was after Lorenzo had reemphasised his dissatisfaction with Valentino Rossi’s Misano manoeuvre. What do you reckon to Jorge’s opinion, I asked the Yamaha man. “It’s ridiculous," he said, raising his eyes to the heavens. At the time I was slightly surprised he had been so open in his contempt; now it all makes sense.
Read the rest of Mat Oxley's blog on the Motor Sport Magazine website.