As the MotoGP Paddock Turns

Sean Alexander
by Sean Alexander
Yamaha Factory Racing Press Release January 10th 2006 Gerno di Lesmo, Italy


On January 9, 2006 Altadis abruptly announced that it had initiated arbitration proceedings against Yamaha arising out of an alleged breach by Yamaha of the two companies' sponsorship agreement for Yamaha's factory racing team. Yamaha would like to clarify several points in light of Altadis' wrongful statements.

This just in from the "What contract; we doan see no stinkin contract" Dept. The technology may be marvelous and the talent spectacular, but there's a third element to the world's fascination with MotoGP and it's called "politics". -Sean

First: Yamaha no longer has any sponsorship agreement with Altadis, as the previous sponsorship agreement was terminated in all respects for the 2006 season.

Second:, Yamaha strongly denies that it has ever breached its previous sponsorship agreement with Altadis.

Third: in the absence of any agreement in force between Altadis and Yamaha, there exists no legal obligation preventing Yamaha from contracting with a tobacco sponsor or any other sponsor for the 2006 season.

Yamaha deplores the fact that Altadis' unreasonable actions have frustrated Yamaha's good-faith efforts to resolve this matter in an amicable fashion, and has seen fit to make its unmerited allegations in a public forum.

To date, Yamaha has not been notified of any Request for Arbitration from Altadis. In any event, Yamaha will defend its rights vigorously,
and reserves the rights to claim both pecuniary damages and declaratory relief with respect to the wrong and disparaging statements made by Altadis and the harm wilfully caused by its frivolous conduct, for the
sake of Yamaha and all of its fans and supporters worldwide who continue to support and sustain the MotoGP sport and Yamaha's MotoGP factory racing team.

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