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Randy De Puniet to ride official Aprilia with Safilo Oxydo Race in 2003

Randy De Puniet to ride official Aprilia with Safilo Oxydo Race in 2003

Randy De Puniet to ride official Aprilia with Safilo Oxydo Race in 2003

The Italian team Safilo Oxydo Race, managed by 125cc veteran rider Lucio Cecchinello, has confirmed its team structure for next season's World Championships. Frenchman Randy de Puniet will wear the team's colours in the 250cc category and will benefit from the use of a factory Aprilia. This new signing compliments the changes that have gone on elsewhere, with the young Australian hope, Casey Stoner, moving down to 125cc to ride an official bike alongside his team manager Cecchinello himself.

De Puniet spent the 2002 season at the forefront of the Campetella Racing team, and performed admirably throughout the year on the kitted Aprilia. Despite a mid-season dip the youngster finished in ninth place in the championship, and was very positive when he spoke about next season and the new team, `It is a dream come true! Next year I'll be part of a top level team and I'll have an official Aprilia. I want to thank the factory, Lucio and the sponsors too. Additionally I would also like to give my thanks to Team Campetella for all the hard work they have done and the professionalism they showed throughout, they gave me the chance to mature as a rider. I am so keen to get on board the official Aprilia, to get comfortable with it and to get a good feeling for it so I can enjoy myself and get some brilliant results. I will have to wait until January and the Jerez tests to satisfy this hunger, but before then I will be training hard so I can begin the Championship in peak physical condition´.

Lucio Cecchinello, who will have at least another year in the dual role of rider and manager, explained, `To now be amongst the best in the category, after so many years of hard work, after five podiums and three wins in 2002, all the passion and effort I have put into this does not dampen my dedication to my work. This will be my last season in the 125 class, and I will go 100%. After that either I will move up to 250, or I will go around the world on a scooter so I can indulge myself once and for all! Casey is one of the great promises in the World Championship, to be able to ride alongside him and lend him my experience makes me feel very proud. With Randy also on the official machine in 250, I am sure that we will do a good job together.´

250cc, 2002

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