Razgatlioglu to part ways with Yamaha after the 2023 World Superbike season

Razgatlioglu to part ways with Yamaha after the 2023 World Superbike season

Toprak Razgatlioglu will part ways with Yamaha at the end of the 2023 World Superbike Championship, ending any hopes of a move to MotoGP with the brand in 2024.

Razgatlioglu has been a mainstay on the WSBK grid since his debut in 2018 with the Kawasaki-backed Puccetti team, with whom he took his first wins in the series in 2019.

For 2020, Razgatlioglu moved to Yamaha, ending his title drought dating back to Ben Spies in 2009 when he won the championship by 13 points from WSBK dominator Jonathan Rea.

Runner-up in 2022, Razgatlioglu is currently second in 2023 but is already 69 points behind Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista – who has won all but one race so far this season, with Razgatlioglu taking the other.

In April, Razgatlioglu tested a Yamaha MotoGP bike at Jerez in an outing attended by the team’s top brass, with the 26-year-old linked with a move to the series in 2024.

Yamaha team principal Lin Jarvis downplayed this when asked about it at the Americas GP, noting that the Japanese marque is unlikely to have a satellite team again next year and will need an experienced hand in its factory outfit should Franco Morbidelli be moved on.

In a team statement, Razgatlioglu says “there was an opportunity to go to MotoGP” next year, but he “didn’t feel the same connection with the MotoGP bike” as he does with a Superbike.

As such, his Yamaha split appears to have closed the door on a MotoGP move in 2024.

Toprak Razgatlioglu, Pata Yamaha WorldSBK

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“I want to say to the whole Yamaha family a very big thank you for the love and respect they have shown me,” he said.

“Winning the world championship was my dream when I signed with Yamaha and we achieved that goal together.

“For next season I feel I need a new challenge and even though there was an opportunity in MotoGP, I didn’t feel the same connection with the MotoGP bike that I have with the superbike.

“But if I’m going to stay in WorldSBK, I need a new goal, a new ambition. I’m sad to leave Yamaha, both the brand and the people, as we have a very good relationship, but change is part of everyone sport and normal for any professional.

“So a big thank you to Yamaha Motor Company, Yamaha Motor Europe, Yamaha Motor Turkiye, Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK Team and especially to my crew who have all worked so hard for me.”

Razgatlioglu’s two-day test at Jerez in April ended with him just under a second behind Yamaha test rider Cal Crutchlow, already casting doubt on the Turk’s 2024 switch.

Yamaha has already set out a timeline for Morbidelli to save his seat at the team in MotoGP, with Jarvis wanting a decision made before the summer break at the end of June.

Morbidelli, who is 13th in the standings on 40 points after achieving a best finish of fourth in 2023 so far, told during the French Grand Prix that he felt “confidence” from Yamaha about his future.

Current Pramac Ducati rider Jorge Martin has been linked to his factory Yamaha seat, with the Spaniard’s current contract saying he can leave Ducati a year early if offered a factory team deal.

Razgatlioglu’s destination in WSBK is unclear at this time.

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