Aprilia names three riders for 2021 MotoGP season

Aprilia has named three riders for its 2021 MotoGP line-up, but only Aleix Espargaro remains confirmed while one of Lorenzo Savadori and Bradley Smith will be his teammate.

Aprilia names three riders for 2021 MotoGP season
Listen to this article

Aprilia has been forced into finding a replacement for Andrea Iannone for 2021 when the one-time MotoGP race winner had his doping ban upped to four years earlier this month.

Favourite options in Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow never came to fruition, with the former opting for a sabbatical in 2021 and Crutchlow joining Yamaha as its official test rider.

Aprilia courted Moto2 frontrunner Marco Bezzecchi for next year, but the VR46 team he races for in Moto2 blocked this move.

The marque has confirmed three young riders were offered the opportunity to step up to MotoGP – the other two thought to be Joe Roberts and Fabio Di Giannantonio – but claims they didn’t feel ready to make the jump.

Earlier on Monday the official provisional entry list for the 2021 season revealed Savadori as a race rider alongside the already confirmed Espargaro.

Savadori replaced fellow test rider Smith on the RS-GP for the final three rounds of the season, though Aprilia insisted the latter was still part of the team.

Read Also:

Aprilia has now confirmed both Savadori and Smith will be with it next year and a decision on who will be the second racer and who will remain test rider will be taken after winter testing has concluded.

“It’s no secret that we offered three young riders an opportunity because we felt that our project could be very interesting for talented young riders, but they did not yet feel ready for the leap and, at the same time, the teams that have already signed them for the 2021 season preferred to keep them,” CEO Massimo Rivola said.

“We respectfully acknowledge their decision. We prefer to continue with our riders, rather than choosing solutions that are still open but about which we are not entirely convinced.

“Even in the difficult conditions of this season, particularly penalising for a fledgling project, the bike improved greatly and significantly reduced the gaps both in the races and in practice on basically all the circuits.

“Aleix finished on a high note and, even in the race yesterday, was lapping with the same times as the leaders.

“Lorenzo has also shown significant progress in just three races and we know that we can count on Bradley’s professionalism and experience. 

“Aleix will obviously be our top rider. The roles of second rider and test rider will be decided at the end of the winter test schedule.”

Last month three-time MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo confirmed he had an option with Aprilia to be its test rider in 2021, though this link has gone quiet recently.

shares
comments
Miller "closed a few mouths" during Pramac stint
Previous article

Miller "closed a few mouths" during Pramac stint

Next article

How Yamaha's MotoGP engine woes haunted it in Portugal

How Yamaha's MotoGP engine woes haunted it in Portugal
How in-form Quartararo is evoking Marquez in MotoGP 2022 Prime

How in-form Quartararo is evoking Marquez in MotoGP 2022

OPINION: Fabio Quartararo has seized control of the 2022 MotoGP world standings after another dominant victory as his nearest rivals faltered. And he is very much heading towards a second championship echoing how the dominator of the last decade achieved much of his success.

MotoGP
Jun 20, 2022
Why Marquez's surgery is about more than just chasing on-track success Prime

Why Marquez's surgery is about more than just chasing on-track success

OPINION: Marc Marquez will likely sit out the remainder of the 2022 MotoGP season to undergo a fourth major operation on the right arm he badly broke in 2020. It is hoped it will return him to his brilliant best after a tough start to the season without a podium to his name. But it’s the human victory that will far outweigh any future on-track success he may go on to have

MotoGP
May 31, 2022
Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma Prime

Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma

OPINION: The French Grand Prix looks to have made Ducati’s decision on its factory team line-up simpler, as Enea Bastianini stormed to his third win of the campaign and Jorge Martin crashed out for a fifth time in 2022. But, as Ducati suggests to Motorsport.com, it remains in the strongest position in a wild rider market

MotoGP
May 16, 2022
The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP Prime

The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP

Suzuki's sudden decision to leave the MotoGP World Championship at the end of the season has acted as a stirring element in a market that had already erupted. We analyse what this means for the grid going into 2023

MotoGP
May 11, 2022
How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP Prime

How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP

Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP bike has had a tough start to life and the expected early-season title charge from Francesco Bagnaia did not materialise. But the Spanish Grand Prix signalled a turning point for both the GP22 and Bagnaia, as the 2021 runner-up belatedly got his season underway after a straight fight with Fabio Quartararo

MotoGP
May 2, 2022
How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt Prime

How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt

In a little over two months, Honda has gone from setting the pace in MotoGP testing with its new RC213V prototype to being at a crossroads - caused by the discrepancy in its riders' feedback. After a Portuguese GP that underwhelmed, serious questions are now being asked of Honda in 2022

MotoGP
Apr 26, 2022
Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes Prime

Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes

Fabio Quartararo got his MotoGP title defence off the ground in the Portuguese Grand Prix as a dominant first win of 2022 rocketed him to the top of the standings. While a significant result in terms of his title hopes, it has come at an even more important time in terms of his 2023 contract negotiations

MotoGP
Apr 25, 2022
The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year Prime

The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year

Darryn Binder has found himself in the unenviable position as MotoGP's most under-pressure rookie in 2022 having made the step directly from Moto3 with a reputation as an over-aggressive rider. This hasn't been an easy thing to shake at the start of the season, but he believes tangible progress is being made

MotoGP
Apr 18, 2022