Aug 12 (Reuters) - Yamaha withdrew Spanish MotoGP rider Maverick Vinales from the Austrian Grand Prix on Thursday and said he would not be replaced for the race.
The team said in a statement that the move followed the rider’s suspension “due to the unexplained irregular operation of the motorcycle by the rider during last weekend’s Styria MotoGP race”.
It added that decisions on future races would be made after further discussions with the rider and a more detailed analysis of the situation.
The nine-times MotoGP race winner had fallen out with Yamaha already and is due to leave at the end of the season after terminating his contract a year early.
He is expected to join Aprilia for 2022, although nothing has been announced.
Yamaha said Vinales’ withdrawal from the second of two successive grands prix at the Red Bull Ring followed an in-depth analysis of telemetry and data.
“Yamaha’s conclusion is that the rider’s actions could have potentially caused significant damage to the engine of his YZR-M1 bike which could have caused serious risks to the rider himself and possibly posed a danger to all other riders,” it said.
The former Moto3 champion was the last of the classified riders in last weekend’s race and took the re-start from the end of the pit lane. He was also given a penalty for exceeding the track limits.
He is sixth overall in the standings after 10 races but 77 points behind his French team mate and world championship leader Fabio Quartararo. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Nick Macfie)
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