Cal Crutchlow will remain within the Yamaha fold for the 2022 MotoGP World Championship after agreeing to stay on as its official test and development rider.
The former Yamaha, Ducati and Honda rider opted to step back from racing duties at the end of the 2020 season after losing his ride at LCR, leaving Britain without a full-time representative on the MotoGP grid in 2021.
Instead, Crutchlow signed with Yamaha to head up its development program, replacing Jorge Lorenzo – the three-time World Champion dropped after just one season – and become one of its standby substitutes.
Such a status earned Crutchlow four MotoGP race outings during the middle stage of the season, initially replacing Franco Morbidelli on the Petronas SRT machine before being drafted into the Factory outfit to replace the axed Maverick Vinales and support eventual title winner Fabio Quartararo..
“I’m happy to be spending the next two years with the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team as their Official Test Rider again,” three-time MotoGP race winner Crutchlow says. “I think it makes sense for all parties involved to continue our good working relationship from last year. I will again put 100% into it.”
Beyond any stand-in roles, Crutchlow could make a handful of MotoGP outings in 2022 at venues as Catalunya or Misano, where traditionally a post-event testing session on the Monday makes it possible for manufacturers to enter a third bike.
Crutchlow’s maiden MotoGP win at Brno in the Czech Republic during the 2016 MotoGP season was the first achieved by a British rider in the premier class in 35 years.