With the beginning of 2018 MotoGP season coming close, Yamaha Movistar has revealed its new livery for the season. The unveiling took place in Madrid in presence of both the team riders – Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales.
Rossi and Viñales proudly presented their new bikes with a refreshed livery. Besides a revamped Movistar logo, the “Movistar M” design element on the bike is now white, making it blend in perfectly with Yamaha Factory Racing’s aesthetics.
While the main focus of Yamaha visiting Madrid was the unveiling of the new livery, the other reason was to celebrate its strong partnership with telecommunications giant Telefónica Spain. The two companies signed a five-year partnership agreement in the premier class of road racing in 2014, underlined with Movistar becoming the team’s title sponsor. In the past four years, Yamaha and Telefónica Spain’s shared values and passion for innovation laid the groundwork for success, resulting in a MotoGP Triple Crown in 2015 and the MotoGP Team’s Title in 2016. The two companies unveiled a new team logo, that shows Movistar’s new colour scheme, with a light blue “M”.
Speaking at the event Kouichi Tsuji, General Manager Motorsports Division, Yamaha Motor Company, said, “We are honoured to start the fifth year with our title sponsor Movistar – a brand that has great heritage in the MotoGP championship. We enjoyed really important and very positive moments in the first four years of our collaboration. This year we launched the new 2018 bike in Madrid again, close to the home of Telefónica Spain. From this moment on we begin a new season, with a fresh livery and an updated team logo, to highlight the union between Yamaha and Movistar as well as to mark the beginning of this new chapter.”
He further added, “We are very fortunate to have two incredibly talented riders in our team. Both Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales have a very strong bond with the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team. I’m sure that, together with their crews – but also thanks to the support of the sponsors, partners, and fans – they will be able to fight competitively for race wins. They can be assured that everybody involved in this project is committed to helping them achieve their goals, so we’re ready to challenge together for victory in 2018.”
Rossi shared his views by saying, “I had a great time today! The team presentation is special every year, also for me, because when you see your bike in the new colours, you start to feel excited. During the winter break I always miss riding my M1, and after seeing it today I want to ride it as soon as possible. I only have to wait a few more days!”
He continued, “Sincerely, I’m looking forward to starting the new season. Last year, I had one win and six podiums, but also some problems and injuries. We want to make our fifth year with Movistar memorable, so this year we will be pushing as hard as we can. The test in Sepang will be important. It’s the first opportunity for my guys to get together this year, which will be fun, but we’ll soon get serious, because we want to get an idea of our level as soon as possible.”
Maverick Vinales revealed the news of the extension of his contract with the Team. He said, “After more than two months of waiting, we are finally kicking off the new season. I’ve been working hard to prepare for the start of the new season and I’m looking forward to riding my M1 again. The bike, the new colour scheme, and also the new team logo look good, so judging by the looks of the team, we are ready to begin testing. Last year we had a really strong start at the first few rounds and we finished third in the championship. This year we’ll try to improve on what we did last year. We have a really good team, so I think it’s only natural that we aim for the win in every race and ultimately for the championship title, but of course we’ll only achieve this if we stay focused every session and push as hard as we can.”
He adds, “We’ll be giving the 2018 bike a try in Sepang in a few days’ time, which is also where we held our last test of 2017. We’ll use that data to start the season in the best way possible. The first time you start the engine and hear the sound of your new bike is something special – it will be the sound of the new season. I’m looking forward to a great year!”