EXCLUSIVE: VR46 speak out amid Ducati negotiations and Yamaha rumours

VR46 are 'happy with Ducati' but 'deserve more' after 2023 performances.

Marco Bezzecchi, Sepang MotoGP test, 7 February
Marco Bezzecchi, Sepang MotoGP test, 7 February

VR46 has confirmed to Crash.net that they are ‘happy with Ducati’ and have the possibility of an ‘automatic renewal’ to continue running Desmosedicis for the 2025 MotoGP season.

‘But’ Valentino Rossi’s team also feels they ‘deserve more’ - presumably in terms of machine spec - after last year’s stellar campaign, which saw Marco Bezzecchi finish third in the world championship with three wins on a year-old bike.

Bezzecchi and new team-mate Fabio di Giannantonio remain on year-old machinery this season, but the GP23 is proving less competitive relative to its factory rivals compared to the GP22 of last year.

Negotiations with Ducati are thus continuing, with VR46 thought to be aiming for at least one factory-spec bike, which Bezzecchi turned down by electing to remain loyal to VR46 rather than switching to Pramac.

VR46 had also been in talks over a switch to Yamaha, where Rossi enjoyed his glory days and where he remains a brand ambassador.

But reports out of SkySports.it this week claimed VR46 have rejected Yamaha, who are keen to increase their presence on the 2025 grid by adding a satellite project.

Meanwhile, Pramac’s future is also in the headlines.

Despite enjoying preferential treatment as Ducati’s official satellite team, finishing second in last year’s world championship with Jorge Martin and leading the 2024 standings heading into COTA this weekend, Pramac is surprisingly yet to commit to a new Ducati deal.

At the same time, there have been well-placed paddock rumours linking Pramac to Yamaha.

With a 'happy' VR46 indicating its willingness to continue with Ducati, Yamaha might well need a (Pramac) Plan B if it is to secure a satellite team and end its current data disadvantage from running just two bikes.

For its part, Pramac could feel threatened by VR46’s quest for closer factory-spec Ducati ties and be attracted by longer-term stability at Yamaha, which is also likely to offer financial incentives to compensate for the M1’s current lack of results.

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