Toprak Razgatlioglu has completed his two-day test programme with the Yamaha MotoGP team, the 2021 WorldSBK Champion reported to have posted encouraging lap times at Jerez.
The Turkish rider was called up by the MotoGP-arm of Yamaha’s factory operation to join regular test and development rider Cal Crutchlow for a private test session in Spain.
Marking his second outing on the Yamaha M1, whereas his one-day outing at Aragon in June 2022 was hampered by poor weather conditions, Razgatlioglu got in a full two days of dry track running on this occasion.
Though Yamaha didn’t communicate any official lap times, GPOne reports he was around 1.7secs off the ultimate pace set up by KTM’s Dani Pedrosa and only 0.7s adrift of Crutchlow.
“I’ve had two really good days. My focus was on completing as many laps as possible to get a better understanding of the bike, rather than pushing for a fast lap time, but it was very enjoyable anyway!”
Razgatlioglu MotoGP outing more than just a test?
The timing of Razgatlioglu’s Yamaha test is arguably not a coincidence as it comes just as teams will begin canvassing options for the following season.
Indeed, the 33-time WorldSBK race winner has been considered a candidate for a MotoGP promotion since he won the 2021 WorldSBK title, though availability at Yamaha has been reduced by the manufacturer losing satellite partner RNF Racing to Aprilia.
Then again, Yamaha does have a potential vacancy for 2024 with Franco Morbidelli out of contract at the end of the year. As such, the 2024 Yamaha seat alongside Fabio Quartararo could be one of the most sought after rides this silly season.
Razgatlioglu faces competition for a deal, however, with Jorge Martin considered the likeliest front runner in the wake of Ducati snubbing him for factory seat this year, while Argentina MotoGP race winner Marco Bezzecchi and Moto2 title contender Pedro Acosta have also been linked.