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MotoGP’s Vinales leaves Yamaha with immediate effect

Maverick Vinales will leave the Yamaha MotoGP team with immediate effect following disagreements between the two, the Japanese manufacturer said in a statement on Friday.

After the Dutch GP at the end of June, it was announced that the Spaniard, who has already signed to ride for Aprilia next season, would cut short his contract and leave at the end of the season. 

However, that was followed by further problems at the Styrian GP which led to Vinales being suspended and missing the Austrian GP.

“After the Dutch GP it was announced that Yamaha and Maverick Vinales would bring their two-year contract for 2021-2022 to an early closure at the end of the current MotoGP season,” Yamaha said in a statement.

“Following recent events at the Styrian GP and after deep consideration by both parties, the mutual decision was reached to separate with immediate effect.”

The 26-year-old rider, who won the season-opener in Qatar and is currently seventh in the world championship, was suspended by Yamaha from the Austrian Grand Prix on suspicion of attempting to damage his bike at the Styrian GP a week earlier.  

Vinales stalled when the race restarted after a crash and had dropped to last when he pulled into the pits on the final lap.

Yamaha said they suspended him for the way he had treated the bike late in the race.

Vinales apologised for his behaviour before announcing his deal with Aprilia. 

“I will always have great respect for Yamaha and wish them the very best,” said Vinales on Friday. 

jld/bsp/nr

© Agence France-Presse

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