Petronas could back Yamaha’s MotoGP effort

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Yamaha will approach Far Eastern fuel giant Petronas to takeover as its title sponsor if Fiat quits with Valentino Rossi.

As well as losing prized asset Rossi, the latest rumour is that cash-strapped Yamaha will also lose Fiat as title sponsor.

The Italian car giant, which owns Ferrari, could move with the nine-times world champion to Ducati as an associate backer alongside tobacco giant Marlboro.

Malaysian fuel company Petronas came on board with Yamaha last year and Yamaha boss Lin Jarvis said: “Our Petronas agreement is in the second of three years and we have a good relationship with them.

"Should we be in a situation where instead of a primary sponsor we have a title sponsorship programme the first people we would talk to would be Petronas.”

Petronas has a long history of big money sponsorship in motorcycle racing and bankrolled the ill-fated World Superbike project led by British legend Carl Fogarty.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt