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Simpson and Tonus linked to Yamaha

Shaun Simpson and Arnaud Tonus are rumoured to be joining the Wilvo Yamaha team which moves up to the MXGP class next season, as one of their current riders Alex Tonkov looks likely to be forced out of world championship racing due to issues with his visa.

Former British champ Simpson, whose Wilvo-backed UK KTM team has now folded, will be back on a Yamaha for the first time since he was a privateer in 2013. For Swiss ace Tonus, who left the world championship to race for Pro Circuit in the USA two years ago but has been plagued with injuries ever since, it’s a return to Europe. He’ll make the move up from a 250 to a 450, as he did in the recent Motocross of Nations.

The team is Wilvo’s first attack on the MXGP class after running a factory-backed Yamaha MX2 team. Russian Tonkov was supposed to be moving up to the team in the MXGP class but it’s believed there have been serious issues with his visa and Russian authorities may not grant him permission to leave the country. That’s why he was recently not allowed to represent Russia in the Nations. Announcements about the riders and team are expected any day.

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