Pol Espargaro to leave Yamaha, Tech3 at end of MotoGP season

© Getty Images
0 Comments

Yamaha has announced that Pol Espargaro will leave its Tech3 satellite team at the end of the 2016 MotoGP season.

Espargaro joined Tech3 at the beginning of 2014 after winning the Moto2 title the previous year, and ended his debut MotoGP season sixth in the riders’ championship.

The Spaniard had hoped to be in contention for a ride with the factory Yamaha team of 2017 following Jorge Lorenzo’s decision to move to Ducati.

However, the Japanese manufacturer did not consider Espargaro for the ride, instead opting to sign Maverick Vinales from Suzuki.

Espargaro will now leave Yamaha at the end of the season, as confirmed in a statement on Thursday.

“Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. announce that Yamaha and Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team-rider Pol Espargaró will go their separate ways at the close of the 2016 MotoGP season, when the Spaniard will start new racing challenges,” it read.

“Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. look back with great appreciation on Espargaró’s contributions to its racing successes over the past two and a half years and wish Espargaró the very best in furthering his racing career.

“Yamaha and the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team will continue to put their full efforts into finishing the 2016 season with Espargaró in the best possible manner and hope to share many more memorable moments during the upcoming 12 MotoGP rounds of the 2016 world championship.

“The 2017 Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team replacement for Pol Espargaró will be announced in due course.”

Espargaro confirmed on Thursday that he would be joining KTM for 2017 upon its arrival as a manufacturer in MotoGP.

“I am going to sign with KTM for the next two years and join the new adventure with them,” Espargaro said.

“New team, new bike in MotoGP: I saw the opportunity to try something different and to try and be with these guys in the future. Working together with KTM will be crazy hard, but I’m ready to work. They also showed me they’re ready to work.

“We have an agreement for two years and I want to thank Yamaha, Herve and Lin as they gave me the chance to grow in MotoGP and this is my dream come true.

“I have to say thanks and also to Ducati and Avintia because they showed a lot of interest too but we couldn’t go that way. Happy to face this adventure with KTM and finish this year well.”

Santino Ferrucci will drive No. 14 for AJ Foyt Racing full time in 2023 IndyCar season

Santino Ferrucci AJ Foyt
James Gilbert/Getty Images
0 Comments

Santino Ferrucci will return to full-time racing in the NTT IndyCar Series next season, joining AJ Foyt Racing.

Ferrucci had made eight IndyCar starts with three teams since his last full-time season in 2020 while also racing part time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this year.

He will drive the storied No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet for four-time Indy 500 winner A.J. Foyt’s team, which will field the car from its Waller, Texas headquarters.

“It’s incredibly exciting to be back in the INDYCAR Series full time,” Ferrucci said in a team release. “Being a part-time driver over the last two years has been hard for me, personally. I’m a race car driver, and I want to compete. Working with different teams has been exciting, and I’m proud that no matter which car I’ve raced, I’ve always shown speed and consistency. I couldn’t be more excited to join AJ Foyt Racing in the 14 Chevy. I can’t wait to make the best of it.”

Ferrucci, 24, had finished a career-best fourth in IndyCar four times, including the 104th Indy 500 in 2020. He was the 2019 Indy 500 rookie of the year with a sixth.

In nine Xfinity starts since 2021, Ferrucci has a career-best finish of 13th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“I am thrilled to welcome Santino to the team,” Larry Foyt said in a release. “He’s shown a knack for getting toward the front of the field, and I think he is a racer who moves forward on race day. A.J. sees the fire in him and has enjoyed their meetings together. I think Santino’s experience will help his rookie teammate as well, so he is a great addition to our roster.”

Ferrucci will be teamed at AJ Foyt Racing with Benjamin Pedersen, who finished fifth in the 2022 Indy Lights standings. The team has yet to specify the number for Pedersen’s entry, which will be fielded out of its Indianapolis race shop.

Foyt’s two full-time drivers last season were Dalton Kellett and Kyle Kirkwood, who is moving to Andretti Autosport.