Yamaha have just released a statement announcing their factory rider Maverick Viñales has been suspended and won’t be racing at the next round of the 2021 MotoGP Championship. Why? Because he’s been a very naughty boy. The news comes a month or so after the Monster Energy Yamaha rider requested his factory contract be terminated a year early. That would suggest to me he’s far from a happy bunny. Rumour has it that Aprilia are after him, but they might think twice after reading about his latest exploits.
Yamaha’s press release reads as follows…
Yamaha regrets to announce that Maverick Viñales’ entry to this weekend’s Austrian MotoGP event has been withdrawn by the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team.
The absence follows the suspension of the rider by Yamaha due to the unexplained irregular operation of the motorcycle by the rider during last weekend’s Styria MotoGP race.
Yamaha’s decision follows an in-depth analysis of telemetry and data over the last days. Yamaha’s conclusion is that the rider’s actions could have potentially caused significant damage to the engine of his YZR-M1 bike which could have caused serious risks to the rider himself and possibly posed a danger to all other riders in the MotoGP race.
The rider will not be replaced at the Austrian GP
Decisions regarding the future races will be taken after a more detailed analysis of the situation and further discussions between Yamaha and the rider.
Unexplained irregular operation? WTF was he doing? Something that could damage the engine and, by the sounds of it, blow it up… he had to have been over revving it. And you wouldn’t have thought they’d suspend him for accidentally overrevving it, once or twice. He must have been doing it lap after lap. And on purpose.
But why? Well you’re guess is as good as mine. Was he doing it because, after starting from the pitlane at the last round, he knew he was unlikely to score points, and would rather have a mechanical DNF on his record than a zero-points-scoring finish?
Was the stall on the warm-up lap all premeditated? Surely not.
Or maybe he was just doing it to be a massive dick. He’s leaving Yamaha at the end of the season, and blowing one of their engines up is the MotoGP equivalent of taking a big poo on the bosses desk. Sort of. Could that be the reason?
Or is it something else? I’m really not sure why he did it. But reading between the lines of the Yamaha press release, I’d say the issue must be him doing something like that. Something like ‘maliciously’ overrevving the engine.
But of course there are two sides to every story. And often, when there are two sides to a story, neither of them are completely true. So before we pass judgement on Maverick Viñales for doing whatever Yamaha are saying he did (and getting suspended for it), let’s see what he has to say for himself.
In the meantime, I expect he’ll be crossing Lin Jarvis (Managing Director of Yamaha Racing) off the list of ‘Referees’ on his CV.