Yamaha in contact with Vinales

Movistar Yamaha managing director Lin Jarvis has confirmed that his team have contacted Suzuki rider Maverick Vinales as they want him to replace Jorge Lorenzo. 

On Monday, Lorenzo confirmed that he would be joining Ducati for the 2017 and 2018 MotoGP season. 

With the reigning MotoGP champion having made up his mind, Yamaha are on the lookout for Lorenzo’s replacement and have their sights set on Vinales, who is considered to be a rising star. 

"Certainly Maverick has proven that he's one of the new, future talents of MotoGP," Jarvis told reporters. "He has a very good chance to go on and become a world champion in the future, so he's an attractive rider. There are other options, riders with different profiles.

"We're in discussion with the management of several riders, it's absolutely premature to say we're close or not close.

"We've expressed our interest, and there's an ongoing discussion."

There have been reports that Yamaha and Vinales are already on the verge of agreeing to a deal, but Jarvis dismissed the speculation and branded it as inaccurate. 

"Things are never as straightforward and simple as they seem," he added. "Behind the scenes, there's lots of complications and issues.

"The fortunate thing is we have a really good bike, and a really good team, so it's an attractive package on offer."

When asked how long it will take to find Lorenzo’s successor, Jarvis said: "Realistically, there's no time limit. With Jorge's proposal, we had a limit on that which forced a situation that could've dragged on for a long, long time.

"We'll take our time, and what's important is that we make the right selection."

Vinales made his MotoGP debut last year and finished in 12th place with 97 points.

In regards to the ongoing MotoGP season, Vinales has been in excellent form as he came sixth in the opener in Qatar before retiring in Argentina.

However, he bounced back with a career-best fourth place finish at the Grand Prix of the Americas earlier this month.