The new satellite Petronas-Yamaha team is expected to be confirmed in two weeks at the British GP at Silverstone, with the line-up as already reported.
Rossi protégé and reigning Moto2 champion Franco Morbidelli will be joined by late-flowering Moto2 race winner Fabio Quartararo.
The new squad, to be managed by current factory-team rider coach Wilco Zeelenberg, will take over the grid slot currently held by the Aspar-owned Angel Nieto Ducati team.
This will expand the Petronas/SIC (Sepang International Circuit) presence in grand prix racing to all three classes, with one grid slot in Moto2, currently fielding Finnish rookie Niki Tuuli, after the voluntary withdrawal of original Malaysian rider Zulfahmi Khairuddin; and two in Moto3, where Malaysian Adam Norrodin and Ayumu Sasaki ride Hondas.
The Malaysian cadre is understood to be seeking a second Moto2 grid slot, with either Thomas Luthi or Sam Lowes possible candidates for a championship campaign; while John McPhee is expected to join the Moto3 team next year.
By Michael Scott