Lorenzo admits Aprilia test ride an option for 2021

Retired three-time MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo admits an Aprilia test rider role is an option for 2021, but insists his priority is to remain with Yamaha.

Lorenzo admits Aprilia test ride an option for 2021

Lorenzo returned to Yamaha – with whom he won his three MotoGP titles – in the winter as its official test rider following his retirement from racing at the end of last year.

However, due to COVID-19, Lorenzo has had just three and a half days of testing since February on the 2019 M1 – with the recent outing in Portugal shortened owing to Yamaha staff needed at Le Mans when six members of the race team were forced into isolation when one tested positive for the virus.

Motorsport.com reported earlier this week outgoing Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso was negotiating with Yamaha for a test rider role, with rumours emerging Lorenzo could be off to Aprilia. In an interview with Spanish outlet AS, Lorenzo confirmed Aprilia is an option, but wants to stay with Yamaha if he can.

“As I said a few weeks ago, I want to continue as a tester and my first option is still Yamaha,” he said. “So, I have won with them and because I feel very good with the bike, but there are options as well.

“The other option is Aprilia, yes. I spoke with [Yamaha team boss] Lin Jarvis and he told me he would soon have news from Japan about the plan they would like to implement for next year, and I am waiting to hear from him.”

Read Also:

He added: “[Yamaha] has priority because the present team always have priority in all cases, and because of the comfort of knowing people already and because of what I have achieved with them in the past because Yamaha is the only factory in which I have been MotoGP champion and because the M1 for me has always been a natural bike.”

Lorenzo’s last test on the M1 in Portugal ended with him being four seconds off the pace of Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro. But he feels basing his form on that test would be a “big mistake” as the Portugal test wasn’t planned, and so Lorenzo had eased off his training having been told – due to COVID-19 – in June he wouldn’t be riding again in 2020.

“In June, when we were full COVID I was informed from Yamaha that there would surely be no more tests,” he explained. “So, I lowered my training pace because I didn’t know what I would do next year and, if I continue, I would not have more tests until February.

"[Yamaha team director Massimo Meregalli] told me there was this test at Portimao to prepare for the race and I started training as best I could.

“There was little time left and I did not arrive in the best shape, and in addition I had not been on a MotoGP bike for eight months, which is a super-extreme motorcycle. So, you lose everything, you lose your rhythm, your reflexes, your reaction time slows down and until you get back all that you need a few days of acclimatisation to MotoGP [even if] your name is Lorenzo, [Valentino] Rossi or [Marc] Marquez.”

Lorenzo also feels it will be “impossible” for Yamaha to find a test rider who can ride the Yamaha as naturally as him.

shares
comments

Related video

Why Mir shouldn't worry over not winning in hunt for MotoGP title

Previous article

Why Mir shouldn't worry over not winning in hunt for MotoGP title

Next article

Yamaha “not giving up” on top speed despite engine freeze

Yamaha “not giving up” on top speed despite engine freeze
Load comments
Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future Prime

Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino GP will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP's present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia's flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021
How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Prime

How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Prime

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Prime

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Prime

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the track's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP Prime

How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP

The 2020 MotoGP season was an enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if you thought the world championship was a poorer place without Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape.

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021
The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP Prime

The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP

The headlines after MotoGP's Austrian GP were naturally dominated by Brad Binder's heroics on slicks in the rain. But although seventh was, on the face of it, a fairly average result in the context of his season, that Fabio Quartararo was in contention for victory before the rain at Yamaha's worst venue should sound alarm bells for his rivals

MotoGP
Aug 17, 2021
Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales - but won't fix his big problem Prime

Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales - but won't fix his big problem

The prelude to Maverick Vinales' move to Aprilia has been his tortured exit from Yamaha. But the Spanish rider must put allegations of sabotage, suspensions and unwanted personnel changes aside once he embarks upon his new journey, while Aprilia must find a way to get Vinales firing on all cylinders once again

MotoGP
Aug 16, 2021