On an emotional return to action for Jorge Lorenzo, the recently retired three-time MotoGP world champion says has been able to ride without pain while Yamaha’s latest M1 shares characteristics he’s familiar with from his previous stint at the team.

After arriving at Sepang midway through the second day of the shakedown, Lorenzo took to the track shortly before 10:30am on the final day of the three-day test as he ran short stints split by stops in the Yamaha garage.

The Spanish rider completed 46 laps in total with a best effort of 2m 00.506s, putting him eighth overall and 1.062s off pace-setter Pol Espargaro on the Red Bull KTM. Lorenzo’s 2019 Malaysian Grand Prix qualifying time last November for Repsol Honda was 2m 00.478s.

With Lorenzo taking part in only one day of the shakedown, it is expected he will resume running at the official test at Sepang alongside all race and test riders for each MotoGP manufacturer.

Reflecting on his first day back on the Yamaha M1 since leaving the team at the end of 2016, Lorenzo has been delighted to report his back injury has cleared up as he found immediate feeling with the 2020 prototype.

Lorenzo suffered fractured vertebrae in a heavy crash at Assen last June and admitted he had been enduring pain while riding throughout the end of 2019 since making his initial comeback.

“We just finished the day, the first day with the Yamaha for little over three years. I was a little bit worried about some things, if the bike has changed some characteristics or that I have some pain or old injuries,” Lorenzo said on his Instagram account.

“But honestly the back was not painful. It was very similar to the bike I left in 2016, the characteristics very similar and the bike itself is very friendly with the rider and the engine is very smooth.

“I felt at home from the beginning even if I still need some time of adaptation to be able to get the maximum of the bike.

“I need to change the style and find the limit to be faster.”


First date  First impressions  #motogp #sepangcircuit #wintertest

A post shared by Jorge Lorenzo (@jorgelorenzo99) on

Lorenzo is working with Valentino Rossi’s former crew chief Silvano Galbusera in the Yamaha Test Team, while the Iwata factory has already confirmed it is open to offering a wildcard entry for the 32-year-old if he’s interested in the opportunity.

The Spaniard teamed up with the other Yamaha test riders on track for the Sepang shakedown as current factory riders Rossi and Maverick Vinales took part in team commercial events in Indonesia.

Lorenzo was also joined in Sepang by future factory Yamaha rider Fabio Quartararo, with the French rider stepping up to the works squad in place of Rossi from 2021. Quartararo was not allowed to ride at the shakedown test due to MotoGP rules, which only permits test riders from each manufacturer, rookies and race riders from the Concession factories (KTM and Aprilia).


Happy to wear only short and tee shirt

A post shared by Fabio Quartararo (@fabioquartararo20) on

MotoGP testing at Sepang resumes on Friday for the three-day official test (February 7-9).



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