Morbidelli is predicted to be a commensurate replacement for Maverick Vinales, who ended his contract with Yamaha and joined Aprilia. But so far, he has performed very poorly with Monster Energy Yamaha. Even though his colleague, Fabio Quartararo, performed very well with the YZR-M1 and was able to top the 2022 MotoGP standings. Then why couldn’t Rossi’s protege perform as well as Quartararo?
Morbidelli is one of Yamaha’s potential riders. He managed to become the 2020 MotoGP runner-up with the Petronas Yamaha satellite team. That capital has finally brought Morbidelli to the Yamaha factory team since the end of the 2021 season.
The Italian rider is expected to be able to replicate the performance of the 2020 season to the 2022 season. However, there is only hope, Morbidelli actually appeared very disappointing. He is now in 19th place with 26 points, far behind El Diablo who is at the top of the standings with 200 points.
Apart from the injury factor, the reason why Morbidelli couldn’t perform as well as the previous seasons was due to the difference in Morbidelli’s riding style with Quartararo.
As explained by the manager of the Yamaha RNF satellite team, Wilco Zeelenberg, Morbidelli still uses the old-fashioned racing style. Unlike the Quartararo, which is smart in maintaining rear wheel traction and is good at ‘playing’ the brakes when entering corners.
Fabio Quartararo can corner faster Photo: Getty Images/Mirco Lazzari gp
“Fabio Quartararo can corner faster (than the other riders), but that doesn’t make the tires hotter. He can drive with a smaller angle of inclination, and avoid the problems that other riders have,” said Zeelenberg quoted from GPOne.
“(Meanwhile) his team-mate (Franco Morbidelli), was driving in a more ‘old-fashioned’ style. He braked hard when entering the corner, until the brakes came on. Fabio only braked on a straight track, then released the brakes, then turned. every corner and managed to be 1 or 2 km/h faster in every corner,” added Zeelenberg, who was Morbidelli’s boss at the Petronas Yamaha team.
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