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Spies Sticks with Yamaha to MotoGP in 2011

Friday, September 4, 2009
Ben Spies claimed the double at Qatar.
While most expected Ben Spies to make the jump to MotoGP a bit sooner, it looks like it really will happen in 2011.
Yamaha Motor Company., Ltd and Yamaha Motor Europe N.V. are delighted to announce that an agreement has been concluded with Ben Spies for his participation with Yamaha for 2010 and 2011. The program foresees a season in 2010 with the Yamaha World Superbike Team based in Gerno di Lesmo, Italy and a switch to Yamaha's satellite MotoGP team for 2011.

Laurens Klein Koerkamp, Racing Manager Yamaha Motor Europe said, "we got to know Ben this season in our Yamaha World Superbike Team as a very talented, professional and dedicated person with whom we are thrilled to continue working. Not only is the relationship between Ben, the team and Yamaha in general very successful but it's also a pleasure to work with him. This early agreement permits Yamaha and Ben Spies to now fully focus on their 2009 World Superbike campaign in their challenge to achieve their first World Superbike Championship titles together."

Lin Jarvis, Managing Director of Yamaha Motor Racing added "we are truly excited about the prospect of Ben's arrival into our future MotoGP program. Ben is doing a great job for Yamaha in his first season in the World Superbike Championship. He is in great shape to challenge for the title this year and we will be rooting for him at the remaining four events this season. Ben's primary mission is to win both his and Yamaha's first World Superbike title. After that when Ben eventually makes the move to the MotoGP championship we will be ready for him and, in line with the new MotoGP regulations, we will create a place for him within the Yamaha satellite team and give him the support he needs for his next challenge."

"I am very happy to say that I will remain a part of the Yamaha family," said Ben Spies, "and that I will continue in the WSB series for 2010. This is an exciting period of my racing career and I look forward now even more. Yamaha has been great in the warm welcome that I have received entering the world arena and I want to thank them for all they have done, and for giving me their trust for a next career step into MotoGP in 2011."

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Comments
AFwestPunk -Self motivation  September 15, 2009 03:30 PM
Ben is a great rider, it does not matter what bike he is on. Once Ben gets comfortable with a bike you can expect him to be in the running for a title. I am just glad he is with Yamaha and not Suzuki, that program was not competitive at all.
Amtrak -Not smart?  September 4, 2009 08:19 PM
EWL, did you miss Ben's wildcard rides last year on the Suzuki? I think he's already proven that he can hang up there. Now, a championship in his rookie year, probably not but I do think he'll be competitive.
EWL -Not a smart move  September 4, 2009 12:34 PM
I love Spies and think he's a talented superbike rider, but I don't think he has a chance in MotoGP (on the 800cc bikes). How competetive is the last WSB champion who moved to a satellite Yamaha MotoGP team? Not competetive at all. Rossi, Lorenzo, Stoner et al. will make short work of him. At least he didn't sign on with the factory Ducati team...
KT -Spies  September 4, 2009 12:01 PM
Bout time they get this out the way and pay the man. They have been in negotiations for a while and realized if they didn't lock him up long-term, someone else would steal him a way with a motogp ride. Yamaha's a good fit for Spies and Lorenzo..... Awesome race bikes.
steve -2010  September 4, 2009 10:40 AM
I had heard about this deal awhile ago. I thought there was a clause saying if ben wins the title he goes straight to moto gp. Is that not part of the deal anymore?