Yamaha and Monster Energy have come together to create a fresh look for the Iwata based factory team and it has a new name – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP. At the occasion in Indonesia, Rossi and Viñales pulled the wraps off their 2019 YZR-M1 GP machines, which combines Monster black and Yamaha blue livery to create a stunning looking machine.
It will be interesting to watch the Rossi, the legend and his teammate Viñales go all guns blazing for the 2019 World Championship. It was a tough year for the factory team, as things didn’t go the way they intended. Rossi was third overall in 2018 World Championship with 198 points, behind Dovizioso and Marquez. Viñales was fourth overall, just five points shy of Rossi. So far, Viñales has claimed four Grand Prix wins for Yamaha.
On the upcoming season and the new look for the bike, Valentino Rossi said: “Yeah you know, in this moment you are always very excited. It’s a shame because the holidays have finished, but we are ready. We have to work hard because in the last period our opponents made a good step. In modern MotoGP the key is the tyres, we always work to save the tyres. It’s a difficult job, it’s very precise, you have to work on your style and work hard with your engineers. This is the objective this year. For me it’s a long time with Monster and I always feel very comfortable. I like the colours, the green and black are good with the blue of our Yamaha – it’s aggressive, we’re like Men in Black. I’m very proud, it’s important to have Monster as a main sponsor.”
On the 2019 GP machine, Maverick Viñales said: “It was a great winter. I felt really good and it’s a pleasure to be here. I saw the bike and it’s beautiful. Normally I try to start and feel prepared. It doesn’t matter how last year went, it’s a new start. We’ve seen many changes within the team, Stefan will enable me to do my best. I feel like I have really good experience with my people, with all the changes I think I can do it. All the athletes I cheer for have Monster. I feel really proud and now incorporating Monster on the bike, it feels really good.”
Will The Doctor finally get his elusive tenth World Championship this year? Rossi is positive and so are we. Let’s hope the team has a better run this season as their rivals too are gearing up to put a tough competition. The YZR-M1 engine was the team’s primary focus in the initial 2019 tests, and the Sepang Test on February 6,7 and 8 will answer some questions about what shape Yamaha is in ahead of the new season. In the meantime, check out this gallery of Yamaha’s Factory GP machines from 2002 to 2019. Enjoy!