Lin Jarvis says it is his hope that Valentino Rossi will remain with Yamaha until the 'end of his sporting career and beyond' following the confirmation he will race with the manufacturer through 2015 and 2016 of the MotoGP World Championship.
The iconic Italian, who has won four of his seven premier class world titles with Yamaha, first joined the Japanese firm in 2004 and stayed there until the end of 2010 when he opted for a switch to Ducati.
However, two dismal seasons with the Italian manufacturer prompted a return in 2013, which has steadily gained momentum into 2014, Rossi currently second in the standings with five podiums behind the all-conquering Marc Marquez.
Motivating Rossi to put pen to paper on another two seasons with Yamaha, Managing Director Jarvis is delighted to have him stay on board.
“I am very happy that we have concluded the agreement with Valentino for 2015 and 2016. Since his return to Yamaha in 2013 it's been a very positive experience for everybody involved. After two difficult years 'away from home' Valentino returned last year, not only to us but also to his beloved YZR-M1. Fans of racing across the world were happy to see him rediscover his competitive performance and witness him take pleasure in riding and having fun again on two wheels.
“The “fun factor” is crucial to Valentino to get results – in fact when he first joined us in 2004 one of the most important motivations for his move to Yamaha was his desire to create an environment where he could enjoy racing. His enjoyment is obvious to all who meet him at the MotoGP events or who see him race on TV and is reflected in his excellent race results this year where he is currently in second position in the World Championship.”
Though this deal has been expected for several weeks, speculation of Rossi's plans beyond 2016 remain open to debate, with rumours suggesting he could continue in MotoGP, follow through on the much teased suggestion of racing in World Superbikes or retire altogether.
Whichever path his chooses, Jarvis is confident Rossi will remain with Yamaha beyond 2016 in some capacity.
“We look forward to the next two and a half years together and it is our intention that Valentino will remain with Yamaha until the end of his sporting career and beyond.”