Forward Racing’s recent deal to lease a Yamaha YZR-M1 engine and chassis package for 2014 has sparked a huge surge in interest from riders keen to secure one of two spots up for grabs.
Current riders Colin Edwards and Claudio Corti are in the frame but could face stiff competition, with a star-studded queue of talent speaking to the Italian squad.
Nicky Hayden, Marco Melandri, Aleix Espargaro and Jonathan Rea have all approached team boss Giovanni Cuzari and he told MCN: “Fortunately a lot of riders would like to join us. I am very happy that Hayden, Espargaro, Melandri and Rea have all contacted me. I am interested to keep Colin and Claudio but we invest a lot of money in this project, so we need riders with a lot of hunger who can show the potential and get the results.”
Cuzari said he will also speak to Yamaha on rider selection and he hoped to finalise his line-up at the forthcoming British GP at Silverstone, but current Aspar Aprilia rider Espargaro was understood to be close to clinching a deal at last weekend's Indianapolis round in America.