Valentino Rossi returns to Yamaha

Yamaha confirms that Rossi will join the factory team for the 2013 and 2014 seasons

AS expected, Yamaha has confirmed that Valentino Rossi will return to the factory team for the 2013 and 2014 seasons.

As rumoured in the Italian press last week, Rossi will again partner Jorge Lorenzo in the factory team from 2013. The seven-time MotoGP champion has penned a two-year deal with Yamaha, he is also planning a switch to World Superbikes in 2015 alongside the Japanese manufacturers anticipated return to that series.

Rossi's first time with Yamaha began in 2004 - leaving Honda after three championship winning seasons - the Italian achieved for MotoGP titles aboard a YZR-M1 between 2004 and 2005 and then again in 2008 and 2009.

It's been rumoured that Rossi's signing will bring in sponsorship from Monster Energy and San Carlo, although it is not known how this will effect the Tech 3 and Gresini teams.

“This announcement is once again excellent news for Yamaha." said Yamaha team boss, Lin Jarvis. "In June we were able to sign Jorge Lorenzo for the 2013-14 campaign and now we are able to confirm Valentino Rossi for the next two years. In doing so we have been able to put together the strongest possible team to challenge for victories and to promote the Yamaha brand.

"We have run this ‘super team’ together in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and during that time we achieved the ‘triple crown’ titles with Rider, Manufacturer and Team World Championship victories for three consecutive years.

"The target for the future is obvious and we will do our utmost to achieve our goals.

"I have no doubt that with the experience, knowledge, skills and speed of these two great champion riders we will be able to challenge for many race wins and for the 2013 & 2014 World Championship titles.

"The signing of Valentino completes our future planning for the Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP Team. Now that this is done we will put our 100% efforts into completing the job at hand and to supporting Ben Spies and Jorge Lorenzo in their search for race victories and for Jorge’s 2012 World Championship title challenge.”