Alex Rins will remain a Suzuki MotoGP rider until at least the end of 2022, after announcing a contract extension today during an Instagram live session.

"Guys, I will continue for two more years with Suzuki," Rins said. "This is good news for me and I think my team. I'm very happy!"

In a press release, the Spaniard added: “My wish was to continue with Suzuki and finally this is what I did. I believe that the project has the potential to be a winning one, I have the desire to win, and so we match perfectly. It’s the perfect place for me, and we are working hard all together to get big results.

"I have always believed in the team and for this reason it was easy to get to the basic agreement very early on. Then we took some time to finalise the details and follow all the internal processes. Now we have to understand what’s going to happen with the 2020 season, we are ready to compete at the maximum level, as we already showed in the pre-season tests.

"Dorna is doing all they can to allow us to compete, but they are of course taking into account what matters most; the safety and health of people. We can only stay ready and wait to be told when we can start, and in the meantime focus on training.”

Suzuki team manager Davide Brivio, who joined the live chat, added: "We signed an agreement, so we will continue together again in 2021 and 2022. This is great news. At this difficult moment, we never stopped trying to plan for the future and everybody in Suzuki is very happy to continue with you.

"We signed now, but honestly it's many months that we'd already discussed everything. But this is what you wanted, and Suzuki wanted, so we are very happy. Now we will have three more years in front us and can you imagine you will be one of the longest-serving riders at Suzuki?"

"It's a pleasure for me because it feels like home," Rins replied. "We've created a family with the team and all the people in Suzuki. I'm so happy here so we decided to continue, also because the bike is getting better and better..."

"Also we decided to continue because the rider is getting better and better and we wanted you to stay with us!" quipped Brivio.

Rins, 24, joined Suzuki as a MotoGP rookie in 2017, made big progress with five podiums during his second season, then celebrated two wins in 2019.

The first came at Austin, where Rins caught and passed Valentino Rossi, while the second was a thrilling last-turn overtake on Marc Marquez at Silverstone.

Rins' victories marked the first time a Suzuki rider had taken more than a single win in a season since Kenny Roberts Jr's 500cc title in 2000.

Three mid-season mistakes hurt Rins in terms of the championship standings, but he still went on to finish a best-yet fourth behind Marquez, Andrea Dovizioso and Maverick Vinales.

Both Rins and team-mate Joan Mir have then been very impressive during 2020 winter testing, catching the eye of their rivals with a consistently high pace at both Sepang and Losail.

Rins, whose contract extension has been heavily rumoured since pre-season testing, thus joins Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda), Maverick Vinales (Yamaha), Fabio Quartararo (Yamaha) and Tito Rabat (Avintia Ducati) in securing his place on the 2021 grid.

Mir, a best of fifth during an injury-interrupted rookie season, is also thought to have a strong chance of staying at the team.