Petronas Yamaha team principal Razlan Razali has set out a deadline of 'July-August' to decide on the identity of Fabio Quartararo's 2021 MotoGP replacement.

With Yamaha guaranteeing Valentino Rossi a satellite seat should he chose to race on, and The Doctor looking likely to continue for at least one more season in light of the disrupted 2020 calendar, the hot rumour is that the nine-time world champion will ultimately swap places with Quartararo.

However, there have not yet been direct talks between the Italian and Petronas and Razali made clear some young contenders are also under consideration for a MotoGP seat. Potentially, both 2021 Petronas Yamaha rides are up for grabs, although Franco Morbidelli is seen as having a strong chance of staying if he can replicate his pre-season form.

"To be honest we have a few riders on our radar this year, Moto2 riders, including our own Xavi Vierge," said Razali, when asked to name some riders that could take over Quartararo's seat, during a Facebook Q&A with fans.

"But then again, with no racing at the moment and potentially only ten races this season - and of course, the talk of Valentino Rossi coming with us, it's an open possibility.

"At the moment we don't know yet - and that's an honest answer - but we will look at all options and I think by July-August we'll have to decide what we're going to do as a replacement for Fabio."

With Yamaha guaranteeing Rossi a satellite seat, but both the factory and Petronas needing to agree on the rider line-up, Yamaha could find itself in an awkward position should the MotoGP superstar's terms not be compatible with Petronas...



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