Petronas Yamaha SRT have confirmed that GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team rider Garrett Gerloff will step in to replace injured Franco Morbidelli at the Motul TT Assen this weekend.
???????? @garrettgerloff will make his #MotoGP race debut for @sepangracing in place of the injured @FrankyMorbido12 at the #DutchGP!— Yamaha Racing (@yamaharacingcom) June 23, 2021
Full story ???? https://t.co/wx1ZEWQwVF#YamahaRacing | #RevsYourHeart pic.twitter.com/78k2MiLucr
The American took part in Friday’s Free Practice sessions at last year’s European Grand Prix in Valencia for Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP when standing in for Valentino Rossi, who was waiting for a PCR test result to come through before being able to compete.
This time around, Gerloff – a four-time WorldSBK podium finisher – will be taking part in the duration of the weekend on board a Yamaha YZR-M1, as Morbidelli is forced to miss Round 9 after sustaining a knee injury in training on Tuesday.
Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK’s Toprak Razgatlıoğlu was also in the running to replace Morbidelli at Assen but turned down the opportunity in favour of remaining focused on his main aim in 2021, challenging for the FIM Superbike World Championship crown. The Turkish rider currently lies second in the championship standings and just 20 points off the top spot going into the next round at Donington Park round on 2-4 July.
Gerloff: "I’m excited for the opportunity ahead, I’m not someone who runs away from a challenge, so I’m ready to get to the track. It’ll be a new circuit for me, I like trying new tracks, it looks fun, fast and flowing, and really suits my riding style. I’m looking forward to jumping on the Yamaha M1 again and twisting the throttle. We’ll see how things go, but I feel good and would like to thank Yamaha and the team for considering me. It won’t be easy, but I’m going to give it my best shot!"