Yamaha will not get involved in a bidding war with Honda over the services of Jorge Lorenzo for 2010, the Japanese manufacturer has said, amid heightened speculation over the future of the Spanish rider.
Rumors emerged at Laguna Sena over the weekend suggesting that Lorenzo is in talks about a switch to Honda for next year, even though he says that remaining at Yamaha is his priority.
Yamaha is aware of the situation, but its boss Masao Furusawa has made it clear that the company will not stretch itself financially to try and keep hold of Lorenzo.
"We are interested in Jorge," Furusawa told Gazzetta dello Sport
. "We are in talks but we know about Honda's offer: If he wants to go with them, we won't be raising our stakes in order to retain him."
Lorenzo insisted over the weekend that there was no firm offer from Honda yet, although he did not deny that discussions had taken place.
"At the moment Yamaha is the first option: I'd like to stay here. We are talking," he explained. "There is no offer [from Honda], but I can't say whether some discussions are taking place. I can say that at the moment, with nothing signed, my manager and I are open to anything."