KTM extends MotoGP deal but pulls out from Moto2, pushes for Husqvarna's return
KTM made several key announcements during the Austrian GP race weekend regarding its MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 presence.
After Red Bull Ring signed a new five-year deal with MotoGP to keep Austrian GP until the 2025 season, Austrian manufacturer KTM extended its premier class presence for five more years in a new contract.
The current deal was to expire in two years time in 2021 but with the new contract, KTM will stay on in MotoGP until the 2026 season as they push to win not only the riders’ championship but all the constructors’ and teams’.
In order to achieve better results in MotoGP, KTM has decided to withdraw from Moto2 as a chassis manufacturer from 2020 onward, but it still intends to keep close ties with Ajo Motorsport outfit.
It will stay on in Moto3 but the push is to bring back Husqvarna in the lightweight category as it marks 2020 as the intention to develop a new Husqvarna’s bike for Moto3 specially.
The lower rug will see a new Northern Talent Cup from 2020 with Red Bull Road to Rookies Cup to continue on as well. Stefan Pierer, CEO KTM AG said: “We made a proactive decision here at our home grand prix to renew our stay in MotoGP and commit to another five years of competition.
“This is part of a wider strategic view and we now have seven years to rise towards the top of the MotoGP class; the same period of time we needed to conquer the Dakar Rally. We know we are firmly on the way and have made good steps in less than three years already.
“As part of this outlook we want to boost Moto3: it is the foundation and the base of road racing for us. It is where we began and where we are one of the leading brands. We see a very good opportunity here by bringing back Husqvarna with force; there will be a new bike and a special direction with this project.
“All of this movement means we will pool our resources and energy and as a consequence we will step out of Moto2.” At the same time, Pit Beirer, KTM Motorsport Director added: “First of all it is fantastic for us to continue to stay in ‘sixth gear’ as a company in MotoGP and to be able to keep pushing hard to achieve our goals.
“With our knowledge of more than three-hundred FIM world championships in so many classes we know the ingredients to have success in racing and we are determined not to move from our objective. For this I want to thank Mr Pierer and the KTM AG board for the extra vote of confidence and for all the hard work and belief that every single person who touches this project has made so far.
“Secondly we have looked at the entire programme and know that our effort has to be well placed, and we believe that MotoGP and Moto3 are the main platforms for us moving forwards. Thanks to the great work and experience with Aki we can maintain a link to Moto2 and the perhaps what is the final preparation needed for the jump to MotoGP.
“We feel strongly that we can have this asset even though we will vastly reduce our presence as a chassis contributor. We can feel the passion for MotoGP at places like Red Bull Ring this weekend and it allows us to feed off that energy. We believe that exciting times are coming for us as a racing division and as a company.”
[Note: This story was also written by me on FormulaRapida.net]