The first part of MotoGP’s truncated silly season has fallen into place. As expected, Yamaha today announced that it has extended its deal with Pol Espargaro for another year.
As such, Espargaro will race a factory-backed Yamaha M1 with the Monster Tech 3 M1 season in 2016.
The news had been widely trailed, and is a sensible choice for the Spaniard. Though Espargaro is rumored to be taking a significant pay cut for next season, signing a one-year deal puts him in step with the factory riders, whose contracts are all up for renewal at the end of 2016.
It means that he will be in a position to take advantage of any openings which arise in a factory squad.
The next move expected is for Bradley Smith to renew with Tech 3. Smith has his contract directly with the team, rather than with Yamaha like Pol Espargaro, and has been stuck in talks with the team for some time now.
Current paddock opinion expects a deal to be announced soon, either this weekend or perhaps at Brno.
Photo: © 2015 Tony Goldsmith / www.tonygoldsmith.net – All Rights Reserved
This article was originally published on MotoMatters, and is republished here on Asphalt & Rubber with permission by the author.