Yamaha Press Release: No Malintent In Replacing Valves In Yamaha Engines

Yamaha issued the following press release with a statement on the imposition of penalties for breaking the engine homologation rules at Jerez 1:


Following the FIM statement regarding the sanction for failing to respect the protocol requiring prior unanimous approval of the MSMA when using valves from two different manufacturers in the engines of the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP and Petronas Yamaha Sepang Racing Team bikes in the 2020 season, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. shares its position.

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. acknowledges, respects, and accepts the decision of the FIM about the incorrect protocols that were followed. It will not appeal against the FIM‘s sanctions.

Due to an internal oversight and an incorrect understanding of the current regulation, Yamaha omitted to give prior notification to and gain approval from the MSMA for the use of valves by two manufacturers.

Yamaha would like to clarify that there was no malintent in using the valves of two different suppliers that were manufactured according to one common design specification.

Following the sanction given by FIM on Thursday 5th November, Yamaha remains fully committed to supporting its MotoGP riders and the two teams in their title quest. It will make extraordinary efforts to still compete for the 2020 MotoGP Constructor and Rider World Championship trophies.

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What Yamaha says could be true. Only those on the inside know for sure. This event has exposed a flaw in the rulebook. Manufacturers offer an engine or blueprint for homolgation and the stewards cannot know for sure if all the materials in the engines are up to specification. The honor system does not really apply in competition because everyone is looking for an advantage. Just as the yellow flag infringement rule is not slowing down riders, the engine homolgation rule needs to be scrapped. As per Neil Spauldings opinion, reduce the number of engines per rider for the entire season to six or even five and open up the design regulations. Allow the manufacturers to develope the engines throughout the season so they are not penalized so heavily for a simple mistake (or left with no avenue but possible deception due to a need to save face). Those manufacturers with concessions would still be allowed more engines per season and unlimited testing.