New Yamaha MotoGP team to run Quartararo and Morbidelli
19-year-old Frenchman Fabio Quartararo has been confirmed to race MotoGP in 2019 with the new Sepang International Circuit backed Yamaha satellite team. Quartararo will race alongside current Marc VDS Honda pilot Franco Morbidelli.
Morbidelli has consistently out-performed teammate Tom Luthi this season in the Marc VDS squad and has 22 points to his name. That is only two-points shy of leading rookie Hafizh Syahrin (Tech3 Yamaha), and five-points more than Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro.
Morbidelli was the European 600cc Superstock Champion in 2013 before joining the ranks of Moto2 in 2014. He scored his first podium the following year at Indianapolis, his only rostrum that season. He picked up the pace in 2016 to claim 8 podiums and before claiming his first race victory at the 2017 season opener in Qatar. The young Italian went on to take eight wins and 12 podiums in season 2017 to claim the Moto2 World Championship by a massive 65-points over Tom Luthi.
Fabio Quartararo is currently in his fourth season in the MotoGP paddock, and his second in the ranks of Moto2. His best championship finish thus far was 10th place in his debut Moto3 season back in 2015.
Quartararo stepped up to Moto2 last year and finished 13th in the championship while this season he currently ranks ninth in the Moto2 Championship points standings. He took his maiden win in Catalunya this year and also claimed a second place at Assen. All up he has one win and four podiums from 60 starts across the Moto2 and Moto3 categories.
Petronas and Sepang International Circuit officially presented their MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 projects on the Friday of the Silverstone MotoGP. Joined by representatives of Yamaha and Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta, the team confirmed Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo as their MotoGP rider. Malaysian Khairul Idham Pawi will ride for them in Moto2 while their Moto3 riders will be Ayumu Sasaki and John McPhee.