So it looks like everyone who going to be invited to the Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS party from next season is sorted, they just have to figure who is getting shown the back door.
Mir to step up to the Moto2 with Marc VDS Racing
Recently the team announced that the current Moto3 championship leader, Joan Mir (Leopard Racing) is to be promoted up to the Moto2 class at the end of the season where he will begin a three year deal with the championship winning team.
He is currently leading the way, eight rounds into the 2017 Moto3 championship with a 30 point cushion between him and second place in the championship, Assen winner, Aron Canet who also confirmed that he will remain with the Estrella Galicia 0,0 Moto3 team; who are not part of the Marc VDS group but share the same sponsor.
Van der Straten’s thoughts on their new signing
Marc van der Straten, President of the Marc VDS Racing Team was said to be “happy” that they have “secured a rider of Joan Mir’s calibre for the future” and was also “proud that he chose [them] as the team with which to make his step up to the intermediate class”.
Van der Straten explained how they are a “results driven team” and feels that their “track record shows that”. He went on to say that they are also “a racing family” and that they “value certain personal qualities as highly as [they] value performance”.
The team President said, “Having spoken with Joan this weekend, I am certain that we have made the right choice on all levels” and again reiterated that he is “looking forward to welcoming him to the Marc VDS family next season.”
Bartholemy admits they have had their eye on him for some time
Team Principal, Michael Bartolemy admitted that they had their “eye on Joan for quite some time, first in CEV and then in Moto3 when he made his debut in the World Championship”. He also confirmed that they “saw right at the start of last year that he had the talent, drive and determination to be a championship contender”; factors that he feels have “proved [them] right this season”.
Bartholemy then confirmed he is “confident that the combination of his talent and [their] technical staff will ensure a smooth and rapid transition from Moto2 championship contender to Moto2 front runner.”
Morbidelli to make way for Mir when he is promoted to the MotoGP with the team
Prior to the Motul TT Assen at the ‘Cathedral of Speed’, on June 25th of this year, the team announced that current Moto2 championship leader, Franco Morbidelli will be making the step up to the MotoGP class with the team for two years, and the option of it turning into three years should Morbidelli wish to remain with them.
The shock news came just before Morbidelli went on to win his fifth round of the season, eight rounds in, at the TT Circuit Assen; what a way to repay the team for their gesture? The negotiations were left to Morbidelli’s management team who was grateful to them for “arranging everything” which in turn left him “free to focus on the racing and the Riders’ Academy.” Morbidelli will become the first of Valentino Rossi’s graduates to join him in the same field…. that will definitely be interesting to watch!
Morbidelli grateful for the early decision
Starting off by thanking Van der Straten and Bartholemy, for “having faith” and for also “giving [him] this opportunity”, and thanking his management team, the Italian admitted it felt “good to have everything sorted so early in the season” which he thinks in turn will allow him to “concentrate fully” on what he has to do this year in Moto2.
He confirmed that he is “excited by the thought of MotoGP” and he is “happy to be making the step up to the premier class with the team” and also with people he knows and has “worked alongside already”. Confirming he knows “it’s a big challenge” and admitting it is “definitely one that [he’s] looking forward to” he declared that for now is “focus is on this year” and so said that “thinking about MotoGP will have to wait until after the final Moto2 race of the season in Valencia”.
Who will make way for the Italian?
The news that Morbidelli is moving up to the MotoGP class means that one of the current riders, Jack Miller and Tito Rabat will have to concede their position. A hard to decision to make, speculation would surround Rabat as Miller is getting better results as not only has he won, in Assen in 2016, he has been a consistent contender during the battle as the top of the independent teams.
When the team promoted him, it was straight from the Moto3 class; a daring move that was criticised (as every decision ever is these days). He appears to have settled much quicker than Rabat, who is in his second season who is now starting to come into his own; the bloke is consistent in finishing.
Marquez to remain in the Moto2 with the class
It may not be the end of the road however! Who knows what is up their leathers as they could well be negotiating deals with their team, or others at this very moment in time. Only time will tell…. One thing that is confirmed is that it is one rider at risk rather than both as the team have confirmed that Alex Marquez will remain in the Moto2 with the team for a fourth season in 2018 where he will be joined by Mir.
Leaving them with an all-Spanish line-up in the Moto2 class, they are hoping that Marquez will very much be within contention of winning the championship. At the age of 21, Marquez has recently demonstrated his worth when he won the Moto2 race in Catalunya in front of his home fans.
Marquez confident and settled with team
Marquez was “happy to announce” that he will in fact continue with the Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Team next season. He said “a big thank you” to the team for “believing” in him and he hopes that he can “repay their faith” in him with “more wins this year and an even stronger 2018 season”.
He admitted that for him he felt there was “no better place to go” and that he feels that “this is the best team for me” as he confirmed that he “really feels part of the family here”. He also realises the “stability that staying with the same team brings is also important” and he is happy that his crew “will remain unchanged for 2018”.
Marquez said, “To know where you’re riding the following year so early in the season is good for the confidence” and so he said that he can now “focus solely on the next races and closing the gap to the two riders ahead of [him] in the championship standings”.