A different scenario had been envisaged when Johan Zarco had freed himself from the KTM, because knowing the speed of the French riding the M1 and above all in the absence of valid and concrete alternatives for the same driver, many pointed precisely to the rebirth of the binomial that had impressed between 2017 and 2018. All seasoned with the arrival in the test team of Silvano Galbusera. A series of joints that would have led Yamaha to have a test team absolutely at the height of the Factory teams.
In reality, after the agreement between Zarco and Honda to compete in the last three races of this 2019 in the LCR Team, this scenario seemed to be completely missed, with the certainty of seeing Jonas Folger in the role of test rider for 2020 as well. However, the situation has evolved and this was the comment of the pilot, who according to the press release would also have blown up some negotiations in progress to dispute the Moto2 championship or the SBK in 2020, finding himself in fact still without a saddle for next season.
"A bad surprise for me, I had a verbal agreement with Yamaha who also wanted to grow the project. We were already discussing what the test plan and other ideas were. Then suddenly their no came, although I was promised a contract. "
Already during the season, Folger's commitment to riding had become increasingly rare, actually raising some doubts about the continuation of the collaboration.
"They decided during the season to have the test program run exclusively by Japanese pilots, so I stayed there for many months. I'm very disappointed, of course, because I focused on this project and gave up other options for next year. A pity, it would have been an interesting challenge and at the same time a versatile task that I would have been happy to play in. I learned a lot in my role as a test driver, but at the moment I don't know how my career will continue. I have no other valid options at this very advanced time of the season ".
Yamaha's decision is at this point difficult to interpret. If on the one hand it is true that the test team was strengthened by the entry of Silvano Galbusera, on the other hand at the moment the name of the top driver is lacking, called to bring the M1 to the limit to make its indications really valid. All rivals can count arrows at this point from this point of view, with the Ducati that has Pirro, the KTM counts on Pedrosa, Honda uses Bradl while for Suzuki and Aprilia there are Guintoli and Smith respectively.
In modern MotoGP it is always more important to have a really fast tester that matches the officers, so if Yamaha made this move with Folger, it must undoubtedly have a Plan B that will soon be unveiled. In a few days there is Valencia, with the last leg of the season and the beginning of the winter tests. Soon we will know the name of the tester that will replace Folger.