The destination of Valentin Guillod’s services for 2017 has been an enduring topic in the Grand Prix paddock for the last three rounds of the series. The second-best MXGP rookie this season with a ninth place finish in the FIM World Championship standings had been told by Yamaha that an option to retain the likeable Swiss on their premier class roster was not being exercised.

The news came late for Guillod who already caused a headache for the blue brand last winter in his split with Wilvo Standing Construct and had to be relocated at Kemea Yamaha with factory support. Most ‘works’ saddles for next year had already been locked up and the former European Champion commented that the Grands Prix in Charlotte and Glen Helen presented the chance for meetings with American teams to enquire about another 250 slot.

In California last weekend, talk intensified that Guillod had taken the best option open to him to remain in MXGP and had reached terms with Honda Motor Europe. The manufacturer had been running a satellite set-up to expand the red presence in Grand Prix through 24MX but rumours persist over the future of the Belgian squad that had minimal presence in 2016 due to injuries for Ken De Dycker and Matiss Karro. Latest gossip has Assomotor Honda as the flagship bearer for HME and with Kei Yamamoto returning to Japan for 2017 Guillod has a slot with the brand new CRF450R.