Ben Spies to Ride as Wild Card at Valencia?

A completely unfounded rumor on the French site Caradisiac indicates that Ben Spies may be given a wild-card ride at the season-ending round at Valencia. If true (or even if it isn't) this makes a lot of sense. The SBK season will be long over, it would give Spies a chance to ride the M1 in a race setting on a track he knows and, with testing time extremely limited in 2010, it would give him a jump-start on the apres-race test. If Yamaha isn't actually considering this, maybe a little fan chatter will get them thinking...

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If Yamaha does not include him as a wild card, that will make me really wonder if they are truly going to give him what he needs next year to be competitive. Everyone knows how much more difficult it is now with the curtailed testing time. It makes it very difficult for guys that have been in MotoGP and are switching bikes, let alone those that are new to the series as well.

But with that argument it would require all the other rookies to be able to run as a wildcard in Valencia as well or their respective new teams are not about to give them what they need next season...?

I believe that the only other confirmed rookies in 2010 are riders from the 250cc class (simoncelli, Aoyama?, Barbera, Bautista) and I would highly doubt that their current teams would be very keen to that idea. Besides, that's up to the individual teams as to what they do. Yamaha has stated that they will be working hard to make sure Spies has a smooth and successful transition. That's why I amde the statement I did.

Wait, would that actually be allowed by the rule book?
He'd be a contracted Yamaha rider for 2010 already and I'm guessing there'd be one or two people putting a veto on this plan (for example the bunch of other class rookies), whether it's allowed or not.

Also, where would Yamaha take the bike from? Take Toseland's away or field a 5th bike - which they always said they wouldn't do?

So many questions... silly rumour mill.

There's no problem with Spies or any of the rookies taking a wildcard at Valencia. It will not affect their status in any way. The issue only comes into play if a rider has ridden more than 8 (or was it 9?) races as a wildcard. And that wouldn't prevent anyone from testing, it would just affect their status as a rookie.

Simple solution. Give Ben the 2010 prototype to shake down at Valencia! Or send Colin or James out on the 2010 bike and give him an 09 model. Doubt that it makes much difference. Most of all he just needs seat time. He has already seen Valencia so that should ease the transition somewhat. Highly doubt any of the data he has from the R1 would help him any there though. This will surely be fodder for the forums!

The only impediment to the other rookies is the fact most of them are changing marques. So it all depends on the dates they're tied to in their respective contracts. Not an issue for Yamaha's new golden boy Big Ben. Let him loose Yamaha!

Motorcycles fall over if you don't go fast

A brilliant race for Ben Spies concluded this season with a victory for the Texan "Silver Bullet" against the World Champion Valentino Rossi "The Doctor", a no prisoner holds bar race, the two riders gave a tremendous show to the fans at Valencia ....