Tech 3 Yamaha boss Herve Poncharal has strongly denied offering Bradley Smith a new YZR-M1 deal for 2015 because there was no suitable candidate to replace the British rider.
Poncharal is known to have sounded out the likes of Jonas Folger, Alex Rins and Jack Miller about a coveted YZR-M1 ride, but insists that Smith was always at the top of his list to partner Pol Espargaro in 2015.
“Bradley was not plan B because plan A didn’t work. We have been talking to a few Moto2 and Moto3 riders and we decided plan A was to give Bradley one more year and Yamaha fully supported that, “said Poncharal.
The French team boss added: “We talked a lot with Yamaha and Monster before and during the summer break and we all ended up deciding that the best guy for 2015 was Bradley. I really believe Bradley has the potential to do a lot better than what he has been doing. The season has been a bit up and down but the speed has always been there and he deserves one more year to prove to the world he is a strong MotoGP rider. I would love him to silence his critics and prove people wrong and shut people up who destroy him no matter what he is doing.”