Yamaha has confirmed it will compete in the 2011 Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi in October with a full strength line-up of Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies.
The manufacturer's commitment had been in doubt due to safety concerns with the Fukushima nuclear plant, approximately 110km away, which was heavily damaged during the earthquake and tsunami that rocked the east coast of Japan in March.
Indeed, with several riders – including title contender Lorenzo, Casey Stoner and Valentino Rossi - voicing their concerns over the event, which is rescheduled to run on October 2nd and passed as safe by the FIM, there are fears that some won't make the trip.
Nonetheless, with less than a month to go before the event, Yamaha has now become the first factory team to formally commit to its home event, with both Lorenzo and Spies, adding that it will run in the red and white livery that commemorates its 50th WGP anniversary.
A brief statement from the team read:
“Yamaha Factory Racing herewith confirms the attendance of its riders Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies to compete for round 15 of the 2011 MotoGP World Championship at Motegi in Japan on 2nd October.
“The Yamaha Factory Racing team will race in Yamaha's WGP50th Anniversary red and white livery for the 4th time this year at the home GP of team owner Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.”