Yamaha MotoGP Team have unveiled their 2020 Challenger at the official pre-season testing site in Sepang. As the year before, the rider line-up remains 9-time Champion Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales.
The 2020 Yamaha YZR-M1’s color scheme remains the same as the previous year, with the team’s YZR-M1, the pit box, and the riders’ leathers sporting the title sponsor’s ‘Monster Energy black’-to-‘Yamaha Factory Racing blue’ gradient. The M1 also features subtle blue stripes that add a further dynamic to the sleek design. The perfect blend between Yamaha’s aesthetic and Monster Energy’s instantly recognizable claw branding is also represented in the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team logo and the team gear.
Yamaha MotoGP riders are eager to get back on track after a mediocre last season. Vinales was third overall in 2019, while Rossi was seventh in the final rankings. Vinales faired better than Rossi with additional two wins. Fan favorite Rossi is a longtime rider at Yamaha, since 2004, before he jumped to Ducati for a brief time. He returned to the factory Yamaha squad in 2013. This season marks his 13th season with factory Yamaha. With Yamaha, the Doctor has attained four titles in 2004, 2005, 2008, and 2009. Every fan can bet he’ll be as competitive as ever in 2020, but will he be able to upstage his younger rivals?
“At the end of last season we were in decent shape, so I‘m really excited to start working again on our goal to get the title and as many wins as possible. For sure, I‘m looking forward to riding my M1 again. I‘ve used the winter months really well. I‘ve done a lot of physical training and riding to make sure my body and mind are in top shape. We need to work hard and be focused on our goal right from the start, so that‘s exactly what we‘ll do!” Vinales commented.
Rossi added, “It‘s time to get serious about 2020. I‘m very curious to see what steps we can make during the Sepang Test. For sure, Yamaha have prepared some new things for us to try, and anyway the first laps of the year on a MotoGP bike after the winter break are always a unique sensation. For sure we have a lot of work ahead of us, but the team and I are ready for it.”
Former Yamaha MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo has returned to the squad, where he won 5 titles. He is the test rider and has clocked first kilometers on the YZR-M1 in the shakedown test held on 2-4 February, after a three-year interval with Ducati. He completed his first test with satisfactory results, and his vast riding experience is expected to be a huge asset to Yamaha’s engineers over the course of year.