Valentino Rossi conceded Yamaha are currently in “a lot of trouble” following another tough weekend in the European Grand Prix where its M1’s struggled for speed.
Yamaha’s weekend started off poorly after being stripped of 50 constructors points due to being found guilty of running illegal valves in its engines during the season-opening Spanish GP at Jerez.
All four of its riders then suffered a lack of raw speed all weekend, Franco Morbidelli securing its highest grid spot in ninth before finishing as the highest M1 in a lowly 11th despite a fairly high attrition rate.
Rossi-making his return to competition for the first time since the French GP nearly a month ago after contracting Covid-19-says the situation within Yamaha currently “is not easy”, admitting the marque is struggling to “understand” how to make the Michelin’s spec-tyres work having recently lost its way-despite Morbidelli winning the previous race at Aragon.
“The situation in Yamaha is not easy, we can’t forget that last race a Yamaha won with Franco (Morbidelli), but we are in a lot of trouble,” said Rossi.
“It’s like we don’t understand something with the tyres, and also we have the problem with the engines because the bike is slow on the straight but also big reliability problems.”
Rossi’s race return lasted just five laps after his machine coasted to a halt, bringing Yamaha’s reliability worries to the fore once again, though the Italian insisted the problem was more electronic in nature rather than mechanical.
“I just lost power, but the engine just stopped, it didn’t break. The team aren’t sure yet what caused the problem, but it looks to be something electrical or something like that,” added Rossi.
“It’s a great shame for me because today I just needed to get a full race underneath me in order to get some good data for next weekend, and to see if I felt good with the bike.”
Rossi has failed to record a race finish since taking fourth in the San Marino GP two months ago, having suffered a string of crashes prior to missing both Aragon contests while recovering from Covid-19.
This has seen him slump to 15th in the riders standings with just two races remaining, with Yamaha’s troubles likely denying him a top ten championship result in his final year with the factory Yamaha squad.