American veteran Colin Edwards is confident he will be re-united with a Yamaha YZR-M1 machine in 2014.
The Texan’s Forward Racing squad has verbally agreed a deal with Yamaha to lease YZR-M1 engines for next season.
Yamaha will also sell a standard chassis package to the Italian-based squad if required, so the new project is expected to be very competitive given it will also be permitted to run four litres more fuel than the factory prototype YZR-M1.
Edwards spent seven years with Yamaha in MotoGP between 2005 and 2011 and he is confident Forward Racing boss Giovanni Cuzari will offer him a new deal for next season.
Edwards, who has been racing a highly tuned Kawasaki ZX-10R motor in a British-built FTR frame this season, will be 40 when the 2014 campaign gets underway.
Nicky Hayden, Aleix Espargaro and Marco Melandri have all been linked with a switch to Forward Racing but double World Superbike champion Edwards told MCN: “It is looking pretty good. The whole reason I came to this team was to build a solid foundation for the future and now next year we have the ability to go with a competitive bike, as far as I know I am in.”
Edwards said he had no concerns that Yamaha might pressure Forward Racing into hiring younger talent and he added: “I don’t think Giovanni likes the idea of anybody having input or control in something that he is doing. He likes to have control and if you are writing the cheques you need to have full control. He understands when big corporations start making big decisions for you it can get a little bit sticky.”