Michael van der Mark will get a second MotoGP outing in this weekend's Valencia finale, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 has confirmed.

The Dutchman is again deputising for Jonas Folger, sidelined since Motegi by a suspected recurrence of the Epstein Barr virus.

van der Mark, sixth in this year's WorldSBK championship for Yamaha, will be targeting his first grand prix points after qualifying 20th and finishing 16th on his premier-class debut in Malaysia.

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"It’s a shame that Jonas cannot ride in Valencia, but I am really honoured that Hervé asked me again because I think it showed that I did quite a good job in Sepang," van der Mark said.

"I have not ridden in Valencia for a long time, but hopefully, it will be a little bit easier than the race in Malaysia, now that I know the bike, the tyres and the brakes more.

"The most important thing is that I hope we have a normal dry weekend, where I can ride a lot of laps and improve myself together with the bike. I just want to make steps forward and close the gap to the front guys plus, just enjoy the occasion because it's an amazing opportunity."

Team boss Herve Poncharal added: "I would like also to welcome Michael van der Mark for his second MotoGP event with Monster Yamaha Tech3. We were quite happy to see that he finished 4th in the second WorldSBK race in Qatar and close to the leading group.

"This is hopefully a sign that he is in good form and I’m sure that this time he will feel more at home on the YZR- M1 and with the Tech3 team, having worked with us in Malaysia. He can go out, have fun and show his true potential."

Full time Tech 3 rider Johann Zarco will be looking to wrap-up a stunning debut season by confirming sixth place in the world championship standings.


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Surely if Yamaha were looking for future riders it would make more sense for them to request Tech 3 try out the more successful rider. Both were part of the team that won Suzuka 8 hour but in WSB it was Lowes who shone brightest for Yamaha. Looks like politics in action herewith the Brit losing out. Why?

Neither rider has a future in MotoGP, and I don't think Yamaha is pretending they do. Alex got his shot last season as a thank you for the 8H victory. This season, it's Michael's turn. Both riders should consider it a bonus, a perk of working for Yamaha, not a chance at a full-time career. It would be really shitty of Yamaha to let Alex ride several GPs, and not give Michael a shot too. 

Michael and Lowes are close to each other performance-wise in the World Superbikes, especially considering Lowes has the advantage in experience on the R1M. Lowes also had an advantage in the 8H, as his size is comparable to that of their Japanese team mate: it allowed for the setup to be geared toward those two, with compromises being made to cater Michael van der Mark. I am curious to see how the inter-team rivalry develops next year. 

Last but not least, Michael van der Mark probably has Wilco Zeelenberg rooting for him within the Yamaha family, and I can't help but think that is making a bit of a difference too. It may be the most important factor. 

Important to remember for Alex Lowes fans: he got the opportunity last year. He rode two races and was in one test. It feels as if that's sometimes forgotten.  

 this is great news, I really hope he can pull out a decent result. 

Think it's that Jack Miller thing - good to have someone on the grid from a different bike sales territory. On paper, so far, his results don't seem to indicate any great promise for future greatness. Not a Joan Mir.

Michael's results indicate a strong future in World Superbikes. A Joan Mir he is not, but then, none are available for Tech3 as stand-in riders. Among the almost-superhuman riders, Michael's as good a choice as any: professional, fast, (limited) experience on the bike, experience with the team, contracted to Yamaha, and *available*. 

Just having the right passport and some familiarity with the team is huge. Otherwise there are others in the family that haven't ridden from the US to BSB and beyond.  

True enough, TWONHA

"Hopefully, it will be a little bit easier now that I know the bike, the tyres and the brakes more"


Sounds as an argument for the "Moto1" class, with 4 cyl, 1000cc spec engines, carbon fibre brakes and same tires and electronics as MotoGP.

Perhaps they done a count back on crashes over the season