Yamaha MotoGP have confirmed recent paddock rumour by confirming that they have been joined by telecoms giant Movistar to become Movistar Yamaha for the next five years.
The deal, a massive boost for the Japanese manufacturer, will see Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi unveiled in the new colour scheme at the opening Qatar round, with a launch on Wednesday 19th March.
Speaking after the signing was announced, Lin Jarvis, head of the MotoGP team, said: “This is a big day for the sport. We are delighted to be able to welcome the Movistar brand back into the world of MotoGP in such spectacular fashion. Dedicated fans of motorcycle racing will know that Movistar has a strong history in the sport, and in the past they supported many talented young riders who later evolved to be the top stars in the MotoGP class. We are therefore honoured that they chose Yamaha as their partner to re-enter motorcycle racing.”
“The 5 year partnership provides an incredibly stable platform for both parties to fully exploit the relationship and make plans not just in the short-term but also strategically over a longer period. Their long-term commitment is also a strong sign of confidence in the sport and provides reassurance to the other sponsors and partners involved with our team.”
Devoid of a title sponsor for a number of years, Yamaha will be glad not only of the mobile phone company coming onboard but of the long term commitment of the deal, which was originally reported by MCN last week. However, it is believed that the announcement was held up by energy drinks manufacturer Monster, who was unhappy with the reduced branding it would result in for them.
Movistar previously had a huge commitment in the series, sponsoring the Gresini team of Sete Gibernau during his fierce rivalry with Rossi, as well as taking Dani Pedrosa to multiple wins and world championships in the smaller classes.