Valentino Rossi wants crew to join him back at Yamaha

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Valentino Rossi has told Yamaha he wants to return to a factory YZR-M1 machine in 2013 with his current crew supporting him.

The Italian will end a dismal spell with Ducati at the end of 2012 after signing a two-year deal to re-join Yamaha next season.

As expected, Rossi has expressed a desire to Yamaha management to bring his entire technical crew, led by Australian Jerry Burgess, with him.

Rossi has spent his entire MotoGP career under the guidance of Burgess and together the pair have won seven world titles and 79 races.

Rossi has always stated his desire to finish his career with Burgess at his side and that has not changed despite a barren 27 races with Ducati in which he has scored just two top three finishes.

When Rossi quit HRC at the end of 2003 to join Yamaha, he moved with almost his entire crew, including Burgess, Alex Briggs, Bernard Ansiau and Gary Coleman.

At Yamaha he then began working with Brent Stephens and Matteo Flamigni before all six quit en masse at the end of 2010 to join Rossi on his ill-fated move to Ducati.

Burgess confirmed in an interview with MCN from his Adelaide home last weekend that Rossi had requested that he move back to Yamaha to try and recapture the form that carried the 33-year-old to four world titles and 46 race wins onboard a 990cc and 800cc YZR-M1.

Burgess told MCN: “Valentino has discussed that although I haven’t spoken to Yamaha yet. We will see what pans out.”

Rossi’s advisor and former factory Yamaha team boss Davide Brivio confirmed to MCN today that Yamaha was aware of Rossi’s intention to return to the Japanese factory with his crew behind him.

Brivio said: “Valentino has expressed a desire to have his crew with him but it is up to Yamaha to evaluate and then make individual agreements with them.

“I’m sure Yamaha will be talking to them in the coming weeks but it is up to them to employ them. They know what Valentino would like though as far as his crew is concerned.”

For from Burgess and reaction to Rossi’s return to Yamaha, see the August 15 issue of Motor Cycle News.

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt