In a shock move which emerged in the Gazzetta dello Sport on Tuesday, Jorge Lorenzo is to partner Marc Marquez in the Repsol Honda team for the next two seasons. As he had confirmed after his victory at Mugello on Sunday, Lorenzo is to leave Ducati at the end of this year and join his third manufacturer in four seasons.
The news came completely out of left field, with all of the talk at Mugello being that Lorenzo would be racing a Yamaha in a team organized by the Sepang International Circuit with financial backing from Malaysian state oil corporation Petronas. But that proved to be a smokescreen, with Lorenzo already having signed a contract to race with Repsol Honda two weeks previously.
There will be much more on the background of this in a story to be posted later today. Here is the very short press release issued by HRC announcing Lorenzo's signing:
HRC sign Jorge Lorenzo
Honda Racing Corporation is pleased to announce the signing of three-times MotoGP World Champion Jorge Lorenzo. The Spanish rider will join the Repsol Honda Team for the next two years.
From 2019, Lorenzo will become teammate to four-times MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez: two great champions with great talent and high hopes that will make a stronger team and contribute to the development of HRC.