Published on 10 Jul 2012 by Toni M.
The former manager detailed some of the negotiations they had between Yamaha and Honda, and tried to clear the air once and for all and stop the speculation that reason behind the divorce was due to the fact that his former client was unaware of certain details before renewing with Yamaha, and also unaware that Honda had further upped their offer - which Lorenzo confirmed to be completely false.
Hirsch said, “We had fifteen basic points to decide whether to chose one bike or the other, and several of these were more important than the salary. Monday after the post race test at Barcelona, we went to dinner with Nakamoto [HRC Vice President] and Livio Suppo, with who we already discussed certain important points of the negotiation by email. The conversation was cordial and before they gave us an offer, I asked them if this was the best that they could offer Jorge. Nakamoto replied, “it’s better than the one we offered Stoner so he wouldn’t quit, and we are not going into a bidding war with Yamaha because it isn’t ethical nor correct between Japanese companies.” They wanted to field Marquez next to him [this was before the rookie rule was officially abolished] and we agreed to give them an answer by June 8th. Suppo told me that it was a good offer and Yamaha couldn’t equal it.
After talking to Jorge we decided that the decent thing to do was tell Lin Jarvis about the offer and he told me that he thought we’d be leaving because Yamaha wouldn’t be able to raise the offer. For a while I thought Lorenzo would be wearing HRC colours because I absolutely didn’t believe that Yamaha could equal the bid. Instead before June 8th, Yamaha not only equaled the offer but also bettered several conditions that weren’t tied to his salary.
Talking about the rumor that was floating around that Lorenzo was unaware of certain offers, Hirsch pointed the finger at Livio Suppo. “These type of rumors could have come only from Suppo. Jorge clearly told him that he doesn’t like lies. I respect Livio as a person but as a professional absolutely not. After the meeting with Jarvis we called Suppo and told him and he answered I’m happy that this helped to have Yamaha offer more. He and Nakamoto were very correct during the meetings, but it seems that at Silverstone Suppo was ready to up the offer again.”
As his role as Lorenzo’s mentor he said, “I only told him that Yamaha is a team with history and if he continued with them he could close his career in the Hall of Fame next to riders like Rainey or Lawson. And that he knows the company and where he already obtained a big victory when he beat Rossi, the legend of motorcycling, and there is no anti-Valentino clause in his contract”.
Hirsch closed the interview making it clear what Lorenzo has to continue doing, “Eat, train, go to bed early and take care of the sponsors.”
Source | motocuatro.com
Photo | sport.es